Conflict and Violence

Our work provides a nuanced and realistic understanding of the relationship between violence, conflict, security and development. It aims to help policymakers, practitioners and citizens to develop policies and practices that strengthen people’s efforts to secure their own lives and livelihoods and improve the functioning of political institutions responsible for security and the management and prevention of conflict, and for the development of peace.

We examine the multiple layers and contexts in which violence manifests – from household to state and global level – and pinpoint the links and overlaps between these layers. This includes exploring the nature of, and responses to conflict and violence in rapidly expanding urban areas.  We have a done pioneering work on the dynamics of micro-level conflict, violence and development as well as on citizen action in violent contexts. Our research on gender, men and masculinities and gender-based violence has provided new insights on how to change attitudes, norms and behaviours for equality, peace and justice.

Another focal area is the dynamics of policy processes around conflict, violence and security examining the key framing and narratives. We explore non-traditional forms of security, especially linked to water, energy, food and health as well as post conflict and state building issues affecting service delivery and livelihoods, and are also developing new participatory approaches to peacebuilding. 


Image of Patricia Justino
Patricia Justino

Professorial Fellow

Image of Rebecca Mitchell
Rebecca Mitchell

Programme Manager

Image of Gauthier Marchais
Gauthier Marchais

Research Fellow

Image of Jeremy Allouche
Jeremy Allouche

Professorial Fellow

Image of Jeremy Lind
Jeremy Lind

Research Fellow

Image of Juan Carlos Muñoz-Mora
Juan Carlos Muñoz-Mora

Post Doctoral Researcher

Image of Marinella Leone
Marinella Leone

Research Fellow

Image of Robin Luckham
Robin Luckham

Emeritus Fellow

Programmes and centres



Navigating Civic Space in a Time of Covid-19

Navigating Civic Space examines changing civic space in Nigeria, Mozambique and Pakistan under the impact of COVID-19. How has the pandemic affected ongoing trends of changing civic space? How do civil society actors operate where space is narrowing further, and how do they make the most of...

Recent work

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Solidarity with End SARS protestors

Staff at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) have expressed their solidarity with IDS alumni who are participating in peaceful protests against police brutality in Lagos, Nigeria. Professor Melissa Leach, Director, Institute of Development Studies, said: “We share the outrage expressed...

22 October 2020


Humanitarian Evidence Summaries

K4D is publishing these monthly Humanitarian Evidence Summaries to signpost the FCDO and other UK government departments to the latest relevant evidence and discourse on humanitarian response to inform and support their response. The scope of the Humanitarian Evidence Summary includes emerging...

8 October 2020


Responding to Covid-19 – the social dynamics

The global pandemic Covid-19 is impacting the lives of people in many and varied ways.  Together with partners worldwide, IDS researchers are providing critical evidence and analysis that are shaping the spread of the virus and must inform immediate responses. We are collaborating across...

29 September 2020

Impact Story

Reforming religious education curricula in Iraq

The Al-Khoei Foundation, a founding member of the IDS-led Coalition for Religious Equality and Inclusive Development (CREID), has successfully engaged with religious leaders, teachers, headteachers and local education departments to initiate reforms to religious education in Iraq and address the...

17 September 2020


Protecting cultural heritage: The Shan of Myanmar

Researching the history and culture of the Shan, the largest ethnic minority group in Myanmar, is possible in UK and US libraries where small well conserved, and cataloged Shan manuscripts are available. Researching in Shan State in Myanmar is more complicated. One can only travel in “safe...

9 September 2020


Conflict Analysis of North Eastern Kenya

K4D Emerging Issues Report 36

This Emerging Issues report highlights research and emerging evidence to policy-makers to help inform policies that are more resilient to the future. It provides comprehensive conflict analysis of North Eastern Kenya by outlining the conflict profile in the region and exploring the root causes...

7 August 2020