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Top experts gather to an international conference in Helsinki – How to harness technology for building peace?

The fourth Conference on National Dialogues will bring together peace work stakeholders and experts in peace processes in Helsinki on 11 and 12 June. The two-day conference will discuss ways of using technology in peacebuilding and examine potential risks for peace processes arising from technology. Attention will also be paid to the complex nature of conflicts and peace processes and to various actors’ relations and interdependencies. Myanmar, Yemen and Libya are examples of today’s complicated conflicts. According to peace negotiators and participants engaged in different dialogues, the Conference on National Dialogues is an important forum for sharing best practices.

This year, the speakers will be, among others, Hailemariam Dessalegn, former prime minister of Ethiopia, Yasser Abdullah Al-Raeeini, minister responsible for the implementation of National Dialogues in Yemen, Salem Avan, Director responsible for cyber security, data analytics and technological innovations at the UN Headquarters; and Achol Jok Mach, Specialist at Peace Tech Lab in Kenya.

A range of new tools will be needed for conflict prevention and conflict resolution. National dialogues’ strength lies in that they bring together various actors and organisations in society to explore avenues for sustainable peace.  Finland wants to promote better opportunities for participation for women and youth and help them play a role in society. Permanent solutions to conflicts can only be achieved by addressing the underlying political, economic and social problems.

The Conference on National Dialogues is organised by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs together with Felm (Suomen Lähetysseura),  Crisis Management Initiative (CMI) and Finn Church Aid (FCA).  Felm will serve as this year’s conference secretariat.

Felm´s director for peace and advocacy Kristiina Rintakoski shares her thoughts on the ecosystem of a national dialogue in the video below: