Working on peace and reconciliation is to focus on behavioural change. Human behaviour is very interesting, but also very complex, even more so in a volatile environment. It depends on a wide variety of factors and interactions. However, many peacebuilding interventions do not take this complexity into account. Behavioural Insights and Marketing for Peace taps into findings from various fields of expertise and offers a new perspective.
The question is how can we account for the complexity of human psychology and behaviour in our peacebuilding interventions? For this, we should also look at insights in other sectors that have in-depth knowledge of human behaviour and decision making, such as behavioural sciences, social psychology and even marketing. In order to tap this knowledge and develop expertise about this ourselves, we set up a project team called Behavioural Insights and Marketing for Peace, or in short BIM for Peace.
Valuable insights in human behaviour
In late 2019, we organised our kick-off expert session. Experts from various backgrounds – ranging from behavioural sciences to political spin-doctors and religious leaders – crunched and brainstormed on the question how their expertise and knowledge could contribute to peacebuilding initiatives. The discussion that unfolded reassured us of the value of this initiative as it provided Mensen met een Missie and its partners with valuable insights in human behaviour.
Case study of active citizenship in Cameroon
In 2020 we have further developed this initiative and published our first BIM for Peace case study. In this publication, various experts shed light on a case put forward by one of our partner organisations – Dynamique Mondiale des Jeunes (DMJ) – in Cameroon. DMJ is a valued long-time partner of Mensen met een Missie and puts youth in the centre of their organisation and strategies. In different target areas in Cameroon they foster active citizenship among youth. The case highlighted in this publication revolves around their strategies and methodologies to create and empower active young citizens.