6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

The Role of the Business Sector in Peacebuilding in Africa

There will be a webcast of this event

Please join the Wilson Center Africa Program for a discussion on “The Role of the Business Sector in Peacebuilding in Africa” on Tuesday, November 27 from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm in the 6th Floor Auditorium

Many traditional approaches to peacebuilding in Africa have emphasized the roles of government, civil society organizations, and multilateral international organizations over that of the private sector, specifically business. While the economic power of the business sector can help to reduce unemployment and increase economic opportunity—both key factors in conflict prevention—big business has also contributed to conflict and fragility in parts of the continent. However, there is an increasing awareness that businesses can play an important role in peacebuilding efforts, but the question of what this role is, and what it should be, needs further exploration. This event will examine the landscape of business sector efforts in conflict management and peacebuilding in Africa, including the key challenges and opportunities.

The discussion will explore the role that the business sector might play, including how to better and more effectively integrate the sector into peacebuilding frameworks and post-conflict reconstruction efforts. In addition to assessing the role of international corporations, the event will also discuss the role of the African business sector—including small and medium-sized enterprises and the informal sector—in peacebuilding, address the possibility of reimagining corporate social responsibility initiatives to more effectively contribute to peace, and discuss the potential for effective private-public partnerships. The event will also provide policy-oriented options to the business sector, as well as policymakers and practitioners, to make the business sector a more effective partner for peacebuilding in Africa.

Launched in September 2015, the Brown Capital Management Africa Forum provides a premier platform for substantive and solutions-oriented dialogue on key trade, investment, and development issues in Africa, and in U.S.-Africa relations. Convening business leaders and policymakers, as well as subject matter experts from the United States and Africa, the Brown Capital Management Africa Forum sponsors a series of public events designed to support the development of economic engagement and policy options that advance mutually beneficial economic relations between Africa and the United States. The Brown Capital Management Africa Forum is made possible by the generous support of Brown Capital Management.