Story written by Katie Rowan
On the 7th and 8th of April, the Brussels School of International Studies (BSIS) opened its doors to host an International Conference titled Conflict Termination to Conflict Recurrence: a multidisciplinary approach to analysing post-conflict societies. This student-led initiative invited 27 leading academics and practitioners from Brussels and beyond to discuss the factors that lead to conflict recurrence in post-conflict areas.
Reflecting the multidisciplinary spirit of the Brussels campus, 6 panel discussions and 3 keynote speeches examined the issues facing post-conflict societies from the perspectives of specialists in several fields, including law, migration, gender, development, and conflict. Notable speakers included the Canadian Ambassador to Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, H.E. Denis Robert, Dr. Jamie Shea of NATO, and Dr. Joost Hiltermann of the International Crisis Group.
The content of the conference attracted 175 attendees from a wide-range of backgrounds, including the European Parliament and Commission, Embassies, think-tanks and academic institutions from across Europe. Throughout the conference, attendees and panellists had the opportunity to continue these important discussions during the networking breaks, lunch, and closing receptions.
The event highlighted the programmes offered at the Brussels campus and received a positive reception from the community. One of the speakers, Dr. Walt Kilroy, took to Twitter to praise the organisers for putting together “one of the best conferences…[he has]…attended”.
Due to its success and recognition, BSIS is already looking forward to planning next year’s annual event.
A post-conference report will soon be made available at http://www.kent.ac.uk/brussels/conference and social media coverage can be followed at #BSISconf16.