This research strand within the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security focuses on how conflicts at either the interstate or intrastate levels might be transformed through strategies and practices which promote cooperation and trust. Although there is a rich multidisciplinary scholarship on the role of trust in social and political life, this work has rarely been applied to the study of conflict at the international level.

Researchers within this cluster rectify this limitation in existing trust research by exploring how the concept of trust might open up new possibilities for cooperation and conflict transformation.

A major research project in this area is examining these possibilities in relation to nuclear rivalries and the challenge of preventing nuclear proliferation. What unites the work within this cluster is a commitment to exploring the contribution that ideas of communication and empathy can play in building trust, and a focus on the theory and practice of third party mediation plays an important role here.

Trust-Building in Nuclear Worlds

This project is part of the Global Uncertainties programme, which brings together the activities of the UK's Research Councils to better integrate current investments and to develop and support new multi-disciplinary research in response to global security challenges.

Trust, Empathy and Dialogue Network

The project was developed out of Naomi Head’s research on these themes undertaken as part of her ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship on 'Conflict, Dialogue and Ethics in International Relations: From the Responsibility to Protect to a Responsibility to Discuss?’.

Mediation in International Conflicts

The ICCS research cluster on mediation and mediation support is concerned with studying the role of international mediation in resolving some of the most protracted conflicts around the world, including the Arab-Israeli conflict, the 5+2 negotiations on the conflict in Transnistria, the Minsk process in relation to Nagornyi Karabakh, and the on-going efforts to resolve the Cyprus conflict.

Uprising Cities: Between Resilience and Resistance

The project studies the impact of uprising and protest on everyday urban life. Besides producing academic knowledge, it benefits policy makers, community actors, government stakeholders, and built environment professionals with evidence-based research on the implications of post-uprising transition.