Public Events: recordings
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Public Events: recordings

Building for Peace

Three seminal discussions with expert panellists - facilitated by public broadcaster Julie McCrossin - will focus on non-government peace builders by examining three themes:

  • Humanitarian relief and infrastructure for peace
  • Humanitarian assistance in conflict zones
  • Frameworks for global peace and justice

SESSION ONE: Humanitarian relief and infrastructures for peace

10.00 - 11.30am

The panel explores the role of NGOs in humanitarian disasters. It is widely recognised that NGOs play a key role in the provision of basic infrastructure and essential services in post conflict and post disaster contexts. While evaluations of relief efforts have praised the interventions and the good intentions of aid agencies, they have also drawn attention to the challenges of balancing short term acute response work with more sustainable aid strategies. How are NGOs meeting the challenges presented by humanitarian disasters? How do we rebuild physical, health and communications infrastructures? What are the alternatives? And what lessons can be learnt from past experience?


  • Dr Ingvar Anda - Catholic Agency for International Aid and Development (Caritas) - Tsunami Recovery issues on the ground
  • Lisa Conlon - Faculty of Nursing Midwifery and Health, UTS
  • Professor Bijan Samali - Faculty of Engineering, UTS - Earthquake engineering, practical solutions

11.30am - 12.00 Morning tea

SESSION TWO: Humanitarian assistance in conflict zones

12.00 - 1.30pm

This panel explores the challenges and opportunities facing humanitarian agencies operating in conflict zones. International NGOs have provided crucial support for civilians affected by the terrors of war. However recent experience highlights the negative effects of competing NGO initiatives, inappropriate aid and the lack of coordination amongst NGOs and governments. Other debates centre on the effects of the global 'war on terror' on aid policy and practice. The panel debates the politics and practice of aid delivery in conflict zones.


  • Paula Abood - community development worker/activist and writer
  • Robert Tickner - Secretary General (Chief Executive Officer), Australian Red Cross
  • Col. Beverley Wright - Chief Army Nurse (recently retired)
  • Dr Brett Bowden - Research Fellow, Centre for International Governance & Justice Regulatory Institutions Network (RegNet), College of Asia & Pacific, RSPAS, The Australian National University

1.30pm - 3.00pm Lunch

SESSION THREE: Frameworks for Global Peace and Justice

3.00 - 4.30pm

The panel discusses peace building as conflict prevention. The United Nations Charter, Article 1, addresses broad problems for international peace and security 'problems of an economic, social, cultural or humanitarian character.' How to solve these problems, to create preconditions for peace and security, is a central question for peace building. Measures to address the impact of conflict may be an immediate priority, but what of the broader causes? Panellists debate the role of NGOs in campaigning for and establishing frameworks for conflict prevention and global justice. What is the relationship between conflict prevention, peacemaking and peace enforcement?


  • Mark Zirnsak - National Co-ordinator, Australian Network to Ban Landmines
  • Sam Blay - Adviser to international agencies and government on development, rights and international law, Faculty of Law, UTS
  • Vanessa Lesnie - Director, Human Rights Unit, Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission
  • Associate Professor Andrea Durbach - Director, Australian Human Rights Centre, University of NSW

The 'Building for Peace' seminar is hosted UTS Research Centres in Health Services & Practice and Cosmopolitan Civil Society.

When: Friday June 29

Time: 10 am - 4:30pm

where UTS Great Hall, Level 5 Tower Building

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