Peace, Reconciliation and Social Justice Leadership in the 21st Century: Volume 8
The Role of Leaders and Followers
Table of contents(26 chapters)
The roots of racial injustice in the United States precede its formation as a nation and continue to send up shoots that bear toxic fruit. Leadership and followership are intrinsic both to the continuation of this condition and to its resolution. The brutality of 250 years of legalized enslavement resulted in generations of children forcefully fathered by white enslavers and their black “property” and disowned by the masters and their white families and communities. The current popularity of genealogy has ripped off the social masks of denial and documented significant numbers of “white” and “black” families who clearly share the same ancestry. This has presented a new challenge and opportunity for truth-telling, reconciliation, healing, and repairing the social injustice engendered by structural racism. This chapter explores the work of a group committed to this process. Through this lens, it examines the work required of all members of societies in which there are structurally advantaged and disadvantaged groups. The requirement is to step beyond the roles of perpetrator, victim, or passive bystander, into the roles of courageous follower and inclusive leader, in mutual service to personal and societal transformation.
Psychological trauma has not been considered to be a primary factor in reconciliation, peacebuilding, and (re-)integration into society during and after conflict and with vulnerable groups. Frequently, it is seen by those in leadership “soft” and often has been characterized as “irrelevant” in comparison with such factors as politics and economics.
We believe that bottom-up work is equally important as top-down work, if not more so, in creating viable societies, particularly during and after conflict and with marginalized groups as refugees, people with mental health reactions, former prisoners, and other vulnerable groups. We have seen that people whom we call “peer supporters” under good supervision can function extremely well. In our experience, in many cases, “experts” do not understand the issues and cultural aspects vital to such groups and thus function less well than people with less formal education but who are within the communities concerned.
The CWWPP has developed a highly participatory method known as Pragmatic Empowerment Training (PET) to train and supervise such people.
We stress that these are long-term processes and that current expectations of donors and others for short-term solutions have been unrealistic. We see such work as preventing violence and encouraging integration.
Pope Francis has highlighted the important global crises regarding the plight of refugees, the victims of war, the consequences of poverty, and the impact of climate change. He has done this while the Catholic Church is undergoing a serious internal crisis related to the ongoing revelations of clerical sexual abuse and a divided, unaccountable leadership. In calling for increased activity for peace, reconciliation, and justice among the Church’s members, Francis is offering to share leadership with followers of the Church in a revolutionary and inclusive way. Ira Chalaff’s concept of courageous followership: assuming responsibility while also serving others, challenging leadership while also participating in transformation, and taking moral action while also speaking directly to the hierarchy, points to a way that members of the Church can constructively apply the call from Pope Francis to the lives of their local communities with an eye to making a global impact. The Church will not be able to follow the pope’s call to external leadership on the inclusion of refugees and the restraint of disastrous climate change unless it is also able to reform its internal relationships and restore confidence in a leadership badly damaged by the clerical sex abuse crisis.
This chapter explores the dual constructs of Winnicott’s notion of holding environment and Altvatar et al.’s notion of “stepping up and stepping back” into leadership roles. The merging of the two constructs provides a double lens through which to analyze the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) process in post-apartheid South Africa in the mid-1990s. Reporting from that era provides first-hand recollections and transcripts of the process. In addition, the political moment of transition and healing via TRCs serves as an arena in which to consider the importance of a holding environment when undertaking social justice missions in which leadership and followership are ineluctably entwined. While the outcome of South Africa’s TRCs is considered imperfect, I suggest that the establishment of similar such holding environments would further dialogue and efforts toward peace and reconciliation in the United States around issues of race.
This study was conducted in the Western Province of Rwanda to explore to what extent youth aged between 18 and 22 years participate in reconciliation processes and what the factors enabling and hindering reconciliation are that, from the perspective of youth, policies and practices should take into account. Six focus group discussions and 20 individual interviews were conducted in 2017. Respondents recognized the range of efforts undertaken by the government following the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi to promote unity and reconciliation. The “family” was identified as an additional key setting to discuss reconciliation in a free and open manner. However, it was observed that some parents tend to shy away from such discussions due to the heaviness of their past genocide-related experiences in addition to the changing family lifestyles and obligations that limit the time allocated to dialogue. Youth suggest specific interventions targeting the microlevel including, in particular, the family to maximize efforts made at macrolevel regarding reconciliation. Programs that promote parents’ healing and provide them with specific skills for effective communication may be deployed to ensure a smooth transition from the painful past. Additionally, since genuine reconciliation is a long-term process, youth have a key role to play in it. Hence, they as followers should be provided with tools to increase their critical thinking and challenge family and peer narratives if needed.
Leadership development is an essential yet complex process that manifests over a long period of time. Owusu et al. assert that in African researchers’ graduate programs, the learners receive theory, research methods and grant writing instruction without significant attention to leadership development. So, how do researchers, academics, administrators, and think-tanks plan and carry out leadership–followership development within organizational and transitional justice fields? The research capacity building of young African scholars in the knowledge production community has the potential to lead to the development and articulation of norms and values that will seek to address fundamental issues of transformation, direct, structural, and cultural violence, and assist in addressing a wide range of problems associated with violence of social injustice. We draw lessons from the Africa Young Graduate Scholars (AYGS) 2017 conference and writing retreat, which drew 22 young scholars (with 10 females and 12 males) who had completed original research and five facilitators (two females and three males) from universities in Botswana, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Kenya, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe for developing research leader–follower insights.
Building research leadership–followership capacity in knowledge production communities in the context of conflict prevention is crucial for establishing sustainable peace. It is recommended that: (1) the AYGS be replicated on other parts of the continent and throughout the diaspora; (2) publications from emerging leaders and followers in the research/knowledge production community begin to increase; and (3) establishment and expansion of leadership development programs for research leaders and followers in African graduate programs.
The United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000) requires that women’s experiences, needs, and perspectives are incorporated into the political, legal, and social decisions in order to achieve transitional justice. In a post-conflict society, peace, and security should be understood in a wider context of justice encompassing accountability process and mechanisms, reparations for victims and upholding the principle of equality in all spheres of lives. Thus, the objective of the UNSCR 1325 is to increase women’s participation in decision-making in the peace process to address the wider context of women’s situation in post-conflict society and committing to protect women’s socioeconomic rights. It is obvious that women’s mere presence in decision-making process is insufficient in restoring stability in post-conflict society. Women’s participation will only be meaningful if they are empowered to be active rather than passive participants. Hence, it is argued that women’s leadership could only be built, if they are given adequate representation in decision-making process and institutions. Women’s participation in decision-making and women’s economic empowerment has a symbiotic impact on each other. When women are not stable economically and unable to freely make social choices and take responsibilities, they will not have the courage to compete in an election. Thus, this brief study argues that the economic marginalization (overt and covert discrimination) exposes women to multiple discrimination in post-conflict society in Sri Lanka. Hence, countries like Sri Lanka need to address the existing gap in this sphere of women empowerment and leadership. It concludes that the realization of women’s rights to equality in post-conflict Sri Lanka may be a slow process, but the Sri Lankan experiences provide a good case study on how to face the different challenges in post-conflict context.
The gendered consequences of war are often not fully realized, as women tend to carry the heavier burdens in post-conflict situations, yet at the same time can be left out of the formal peace process. Women can be part of the peace process informally through economic empowerment and sustainability. As most post-conflict situations are occurring in the developing world, one of the major issues in the peace process is the notion of a rescue narrative. Organizations from the developed world approach peacebuilding as a project that often disenfranchises and disempowers the people they are trying to help. Therefore, women must be empowered to contribute to their economic situations rather than becoming dependent on the help of outsiders. This amplifies the role of the follower by giving her the tools to be part of the solution and become self-sustainable.
This chapter argues for the role of social enterprise in building sustainable peace by giving women agency and power in their communities. It will look at these phenomena through the lens of a non-governmental organization, 31 Bits, that offers a valuable case study in the post-conflict Northern Uganda town of Gulu where they employ 100 plus women in a five-year program that equips them to become fully self-sustainable through the creation of jewelry handmade from recycled paper. Their holistic approach moves beyond the nonprofit model of charity and survival for giving their beneficiaries the chance to thrive. In this way, it is not relief or rescue work but rather informal sustainable peace development. When women are economically empowered, their communities are closer to reaching gender equality and achieving positive peace.
International Law and Social Justice
Bosnia-Herzegovina has recovered slowly from the war of 1992–1995 partly due to the fact that the Dayton Accord that ended the war created a consociational state segmented by the three majority ethnic and religious groups, the Bosniaks, the Serbs, and the Croats. These “constituent peoples” live in divided spaces, rule the country separately, and have not yet reconciled their differences, impeding the creation of national identity. Women’s nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and women peacemakers are working toward reconciliation and peace through the construction of an alternative narrative to that of the government’s and creating an increasingly influential civil society. These NGOs, comprised of women “victims” who became “empowered leaders,” are fostering reconciliation and peace through the promotion of the human rights of five groups: (1) deceased victims of the war; (2) surviving victims of the war; (3) minority groups; (4) marginalized groups; and (5) women. By the construction of liminal space through civic art, psychosocial healing, and political action, these groups are creating a new future and building the momentum to push the country forward to a reintegrated society. Leadership of the groups is dispersed throughout the country and comprised of many ethnic groups who collaborate to meet the needs and demands of their followers, who, in effect, have created the leaders and lead inclusively with them. The chapter provides an interesting study of the power of women, who turned victimhood into social action, to build a grassroots civil society that is fostering reconciliation and peace.
The International Climate Change Regime is important for the very survival of the humankind. However, the unimpressive results and escalation of the challenges are becoming very dangerous. By looking into participation at the international level, this chapter finds that women’s participation is very low. The chapter relies on the Feminist Theory for International Law and Relations to argue that the international regime is lacking women’s leadership traits as solidarity, creativity, and resilience. The cases of the El Nino in Peru, local farming in Brazil, and energy efficiency for cookstoves in Kenya present positive examples in which women’s participation is essential, generating a model bottom-up that includes local and transnational levels that fill that gap that risks global environmental and human health and life itself.
In an unpredictable and volatile world, more than ever before we need transformational leadership based on a paradigm of social justice, peace, and reconciliation. Instead, what we are increasingly witnessing is toxicity in the actions and behaviors of leaders and followers. Political leaders in Britain are stirring up division instead of unity and causing serious damage to the fabric of society. Immigrants are a convenient cover for politicians rather than facing up to the real causes of anger in society many of which are due to the corrosive impact of austerity imposed after the global economic crisis of 2008. The toxic political environment is inciting a war on civility.
This chapter uses Brexit, the British referendum on remaining or leaving the EU as a focal point from which to observe the failures of Britain’s political leaders in the lead up to and the execution of “the will of the people” to leave the EU. At this critical moment in the history of Britain, essential leadership characteristics including honesty, integrity, authenticity, and courage are not in evidence.
The final section of the chapter is a call to arms to everyone involved in leadership studies, conflict resolution, leadership education, scholarship, and research to address the question: How do we make an active contribution to improving the enactment of leadership and followership in fractured societies? What are our responsibilities as a multilayered community of practice? Are we really practicing what we preach in supporting diverse, inclusive leadership and followership?
The 1990s war in Bosnia and Herzegovina is remembered for the atrocities committed by each of the ethnic groups involved. However, while it was mainly the leaders that were held to blame, the role of followers in these events also needs consideration. One cannot lead without followers. One cannot accomplish genocide without obedient followers. This study will examine the war in terms of three types of followers – participants, bystanders, and upstanders (those who stood up for their beliefs of right and wrong, refusing to obey orders from superiors or give in to the pressures of the situation). Studies in the past, such as the Milgram Experiment and the Stanford Prison Experiment, focused on the negative side of human behavior. We need to also focus research on the positive side of human behavior such as that displayed by the upstanders, so that such positive behavior can be encouraged and further developed in the interests of peace.
On September 11th, 1973, started the darkest stage in the recent history of Chile. The military and the police, at the command of General Augusto Pinochet, executed the most atrocious acts against the human dignity that the country had witnessed. The martial and technocratic leaders of the dictatorship ripped apart and redesigned the institutions of the country at their will, through to the elimination of the opposition and the systematic violation of human rights, which reached any person or group. Just a few days after the coup d’état that brought Pinochet to power, the Cardinal and Archbishop of Santiago, Raúl Silva Henríquez, and a group of churches declared themselves against the devastating violence that was gripping the country. Immediately, the religious spaces took up the lead in the defense of the most vulnerable, the persecuted, marginalized, and poor. The major effort focused on the Vicariate of Solidarity, an organization of the Catholic Church in Chile that was tasked with the promotion and defense of human rights, which offered legal and social assistance to the victims and their families. The Vicariate quickly positioned itself as a leader in search of justice against the backdrop of repression, censorship, lack of representative institutions, and prohibition of popular movements. The purpose of the present chapter is to analyze the work of the Vicariate of Solidarity and its leading role in the fight against human rights violations, strengthening social reorganization, reconciliation, and the return to democracy in Chile.
In many countries over the world, women have waged peace to challenge systemic oppressions and build societies that are reflective of women’s voices, and in fact, all voices. Moved by the desire for change, and often even willing to put themselves at risk, these women have paved the way for societal change focused on peace, justice, and freedom. With the assistance of narratives from the Women’s PeaceMakers program at the University of San Diego (San Diego, California), we can come to know some of these women and understand their stories. This chapter shares the findings from a pilot study that helps to understand the work of these Women PeaceMakers through the lens of the Integral Perspective of Peace Leadership (McIntyre Miller & Green, 2015). It also offers recommendations for others engaging in the leadership and followership work of creating, sustaining, and actualizing a movement with particular attention paid to the modern United States-based Me Too and Time’s Up™ movements.
The general global leadership literature has had little to say about African models of leadership. Despite this, the continent of Africa has deep and rich traditions of relational leadership that have been practiced over centuries to honor individuality, broker difference, and foster unity. This chapter shares a number of these practices and illustrates how they have been used to nurture community at the African Leadership Academy and the African Leadership University. We conclude with our perspective on the relevance of these practices to building community in the wider world.
Conflict-related sexual violence, primarily affecting women, has become synonymous with the notion that stigmatization and dominant male power relations lead to the suppression of female voices when speaking about their experiences. Yet theories around empowerment argue that the resilience and strength of survivors not only helps them to deal with the harm they have suffered, but also encourages them to become leaders and mobilize others within their communities who have suffered similar fates.
A platform must exist that can facilitate and promote the efforts of survivors who are actively engaged in bringing about change. One means to achieve such a goal is to provide those who have been victimized with a mechanism to connect, share experiences, and engage in advocacy in large groups. SEMA: The Global Network of Victims and Survivors to End Wartime Sexual Violence represents one such platform that supports women in making a change on a number of issues. This chapter will discuss the stigma faced by women and girls, the benefits of a global survivor network that thrives on leadership, and the impact such an initiative may have on reparations.
SEMA and its focus on reparations is both influenced by and influences survivor leaders, who entail a crucial part of decision-making. Through its survivor-led core, SEMA ensures that the voices that can bring about the most change are made central, and the strength of women is reinforced.
In Indonesia, the usage of natural resources is one of the three main conflict issues (Directorate General of Politics and Public Administration, Ministry of Home Affairs, 2016; Habibie Center, 2013). Forty-Seven percent of the conflicts are between communities and the extractive companies (Agrarian Reform Consortium, 2014). Many of these extractive companies choose to implement a short-term conflict management approach, which include charitable programs or the usage of security, as a way to interact with the locals. However, they do tend to ignore the local wisdom of the community in resolving the issues, or even apply a different parameter to acknowledge the developmental progress in the community. Due to their short-term, unsustainable approach, the communities’ trust in these extractive companies is very low, perceiving that the companies are treating them unfairly. To cultivate trust in the community, an integrative stakeholder engagement process must be implemented by the extractive company through concrete actions for the community. These actions should involve the active participation of the communities from time to time, not only in times of crisis. This chapter argues that to be able to handle external conflicts, the extractive company must first resolve its internal conflicts by adjusting its perspective, orientation, and mindset between its leaders and followers. Another important aspect is that the companies need to develop an understanding regarding the cultural diversity and customs in Indonesia. The extractive company should implement an integrated stakeholder engagement approach which provides a platform for followers and leaders in the company to be able to work together in managing the conflict in the community. This chapter proposes the principles underlying the dynamics of the relationship between the management and staff in the field during the stakeholder engagement process to achieve perceived social justice in society.
Peacebuilding is often premised on international intervention in post-conflict situations. This epilogue extends the concept to address preventative peacebuilding in pre-conflict societies. Social movement organizations that spring from democratically oriented movements can either reproduce dominant and dominating leadership styles, or they can cultivate democratizing leadership (Klein, 2016) by developing democratic practices, structures, and cultures within and between organizations. Democratizing leadership promotes leadership as a verb more than a noun: as the operation of power in relationship between people, rather than as positional power grounded in an authority figure. In democratizing leadership, democratic decision-making is preceded by the development of individual and collective voice and followed by responsible collective action. In addition to these processes, democratic values are also essential, including: freedom (differentiated from autonomy), justice (procedural, social, and restorative justice), and equity (more than equality), which underlie structural processes and inform practices. When social movement organizations find creative tension between ad hoc leadership and the tendency toward bureaucratization, they can cultivate a democratic culture through organizational practices and structures for preventative peacebuilding work. Leadership in such organizations recognizes and utilizes creative conflict to sustain agonistic pluralism and promote conflictual consensus (Mouffe, 2013). This epilogue provides examples of democratizing leadership from social movement organizations, including: In the Heart of the Beast Theater, Minnesota Alliance of Peacemakers, Neighborhood Leadership Program, and the Higher Education Consortium for Urban Affairs, that illustrate how democratizing leadership can be developed in pre-conflict preventative peacebuilding organizations by integrating democratic practices, structures, and cultures.
- Publication date
- Book series
- Building Leadership Bridges
- Series copyright holder
- Emerald Publishing Limited
- Book series ISSN