Impact:Peace Launches "Peace in Our Cities" Campaign to Reduce Urban Violence Globally

On International Day of Peace, September 21 2019, the Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice’s Impact:Peace initiative, together with +Peace and the Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies,  launched the Peace in Our Cities Campaign. The campaign calls on mayors, local authorities, civil society, the private sector, and other partners to join the growing movement to reduce global violence by committing to work towards halving violence in their municipality by 2030.

Peace in Our Cities was launched by 11 early adopter cities representing nearly 16 million people globally, ranging from Colombo, Sri Lanka to Durban, South Africa to Guadalajara, Mexico. In addition, UN Habitat, Strong Cities Network and Creative Associates are campaign partners.

Globally, 82% of deadly violence occurs outside of conflict zones, with much of this violence concentrated in urban settings. The Peace in Our Cities campaign seeks to reverse this trend by creating concrete, participatory, and evidence-based platforms that make progress towards significantly reducing violence while simultaneously bringing urgent attention to the imperative of addressing urban violence.

List of Early Adoption Campaign Cities & Local Authorities

  • Colombo, Sri Lanka
  • Nairobi Municipality, Kenya
  • Kibera County, Nairobi, Kenya
  • Cali, Colombia
  • Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Tripoli, Lebanon
  • Bangui, Central African Republic
  • Durban, South Africa
  • Escobedo, Mexico
  • Kumanovo, Macedonia
  • Chaguanas, Trinidad and Tobago

The campaign is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals agreed to by all UN member states in 2015. Goal 16 calls for more peaceful, just and inclusive societies, including by significantly reducing all forms of violence. SDG16 is widely recognized as critical to the achievement of all other development ambitions, yet it lags behind most other global goals in terms of momentum, investment, and support worldwide. Like the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, the Peace in Our Cities Campaign seeks to become a preeminent organizing body to address one of today’s most pressing challenges: violence that threatens individual lives and undermines the very growth and prosperity of the urban world.

In addition to the New York launch events, many of our city partners held their own celebrations, with signing ceremonies that took place in Bangui all the way to Chaguanas.

Peace in Our Cities Signing Ceremony in Bangui, Central African Republic

As a co-facilitator and creator of this campaign, Impact:Peace will be primarily responsible for the provision of evidence and knowledge to be shared among, across and beyond our city partners. Launching and supporting this campaign aligns perfectly with our overall strategy of providing research to accelerate high potential change processes that can lead to improved violence prevention and peacebuilding globally.