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Oxfam’s mission is a just world without poverty, which seems an impossible task in countries where violence is an everyday feature. Oxfam Novib works predominantly in countries affected by inequality, violent conflicts and lack of mechanisms to address different and opposed interests. It is for this reason that Oxfam Novib and its partners recognise the need to work on conflict transformation and make a concerted effort to structurally and positively transform the conditions leading to destructive violence. Oxfam Novib’s network, its advocacy potential, and its ability to link the various levels, i.e. local partnerships for development and conflict work, give Oxfam Novib a unique comparative advantage in the field of conflict transformation.

In this policy paper, some of the general thinking of conflict transformation in both academia and the development field is reviewed; the term conflict transformation and what it entails for Oxfam Novib’s work is defined; and, finally, concrete examples of how this more theoretical understanding of conflict transformation is translated into practice are provided.

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