We are very pleased to announce a new award to the University of Glasgow within the British Academy’s GCRF Education and Learning in Crises Programme. The project is entitled Educational Peacebuilding in Medellin and Acapulco: Understanding the Role of Education, Culture and Learning in Responding to Crises, and is led from Glasgow by Professor Evelyn Arizpe, Dr Sinead Gormally, working with Dr Nohora Niño Vega, El Colegio de Sonora, Mexico and Dr Jerónimo Castillo Muñoz, Fundación Ideas para la Paz, Colombia. The value of the award is £357,915.
The project aims to create a detailed understanding of the infrastructure, engagement, resources and policies required to educationally transform a community in order to contribute to reducing the negative impacts of drug-related violence and crime. It seeks to investigate the circumstances, policies and practices through which Medellin (Colombia) has been able to develop and implement an inclusive, life-long learning strategy, and to transfer that learning to Acapulco (Mexico). By working alongside politicians, community members, young people and stakeholders in both Medellin and Acapulco, the project team will work to put forward recommendations for responding to crises of violence. The innovative, participatory methodology will focus on informal education, producing an educational peacebuilding model and index for transferability, trialling concepts in the creation of a vision for ‘the Acapulco we want’, along with an implementation framework to create future positive learning opportunities.
This proposal was inspired following the connections made between mayors of Medellin and Acapulco, by Sergio Hernandez, formerly a senior administrator for the Federal Government of Mexico City, and now a PhD student at the University of Glasgow. We are very grateful for the facilitation that he has undertaken, including at the 4th UNESCO Learning Cities conference in Medellin. We hope that the project makes a contribution to UNESCO’s work.