This paper situates the challenges of building peace and security within the historical legacies of unequal development, militarism and global violence. It identifies the spaces for change opened by shifts in global balances of power and profit during the twenty-first century.
Rapid technological changes, notably in information technologies are transforming the worlds of war and work. Frameworks of political authority are loosening, called in question by new forms of subaltern politics.
These transformations are fraught with dangers but also bring opportunities. Whilst poor and vulnerable people, who are ‘secured’ and ‘developed’ experience violence and deprivation locally, their insecurity is compounded by global and national dislocations. Peacebuilding cannot be equitable or durable unless their vernacular understandings and day-to-day experiences of insecurity are brought into the frame.