Plowshares Institute  

Community Conflict Transformation (CCT)

Plowshares specializes in training national, community and religious leaders in creative ways to intervene in conflict.  For the past two decades, Plowshares staff members have been equipping government, community and religious leaders in Asia, Africa, North and South America to develop proactive approaches to community conflict. 

"Conflict Transformation" is using the energy of conflict to address not only the issues and relationships among parties, but also the structural causes of conflict. Our CCT workshops (click on each topic for more information):

Teach conflict transformation skills

Based on years of experience in South Africa equipping leaders for a post-apartheid reality, Plowshares developed the Peace Skills curriculum, which is now adapted for use all over the world. The two volume curriculum has been translated into Chinese, French, Indoneisian and Spanish with new local case studies.

In most programs, selected workshop participants become trainers themselves. Equipped with advanced mediation and transformation skills, local leaders have disseminated the training in China and Hong Kong, Indonesia and Timor Leste, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Uganda, DR Congo, Cuba, Peru, and India.  Multiethnic and multicultural teams of mediators trained in these programs have helped transform communities dealing with problems from community policing to public education.


Employ the case method
  • Plowshares staff members adapt reports of real conflicts into problem-posing case studies to be used in workshops.
  • The cases used in workshops are always locally relevant.  For example, workshop participants in China work on cases relating to the Sichuan earthquake, coal mine safety, and migration to Chinese cities.   In the U.S. cases are about issues such as educational reform, air and water quality and racial tensions.
  • Participants practice their new skills by role playing as conflicting parties and mediators involved in the case studies.


Build relationships among communities

In a Plowshares workshop, participants:

  • Develop their skills to constructively address conflicts in and among their communities.
  • Develop ways to share approaches to mediation and peace building with their constituencies.
  • Build new relationships with others with whom they do not customarily work.
    Such alliances often constitute the basis for ongoing systemic change.


Are tailored for each group of participants

Plowshares adapts our experience and curriculum to best fit the needs of the training group. Past adaptations have included:

  • Extended programs in 10 US cities to train leaders from government, community groups, minority coalitions, and police to resolve current conflict and build relationships to address future differences;
  • A one-day workshop for the staff of a community health center.
  • A two-day workshop for a state-wide religious organization to equip church leaders to deal with divisive issues including responses to war and homosexuality.
  • Workshops of various lengths in Indonesia with the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights.
  • Workshops in Uganda with religious and government leaders on HIV/AIDS and development.
  • Week-long workshops in South Africa with religious, academic and civic leaders on writing case studies of local conflicts to be used in national and intenational training events.


A partial list of Community Conflict Transformation projects
  • 1990-1994: Empowering for Reconciliation with Justice in South Africa, (for which the Evans were nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by individual members of South Africa’s parliament and teh Truth and Reconciliation Commission.) This program equipped more than 1500 community and religious leaders with CCT skills in preparation for the first “all-race” elections in 1994.
  • 1995- present: Empowering for Reconciliation and Peace in Indonesia.  This program has equipped multi-faith teams which addressed sectarian violence and established peace organizations in some of the most turbulent areas of Indonesia.
  • 1998-2009: Multi-year Community Conflict Transformation programs in 10 U.S. urban centers.
  • 2003 – present: Human Rights, Democracy, and Conflict Transformation in Indonesia. Our primary partner in this program is the Indonesian Ministry of Law and Human Rights.
  • 2005-2007: Aceh Province (Indonesia) Peace Initiative.  This program focused upon democratic participation, integration of former rebel leaders, and trauma healing following the tsunami and Peace Accord.
  • 2008-present: Risk Management for a Harmonious Society in China. This program equips government leaders, university faculty and emerging non-governmental oganization leaders to constructively engage in conflict seeking negotiated rather than forced settlements in national and local disputes.


Community Kitchen

plowshares www

P. O. Box 243 | Simsbury, CT 06070-0243
Phone: (860) 651-4304 
| Fax: (860) 651-4305