The role of formal schooling in reconciliation processes: the cases of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Northern Ireland
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The relationship between education and conflict is one which has been explored considerably in recent years. Somewhat lacking, however, is an in-depth analysis of the role education, and specifically formal schooling systems, can play in reconciliation processes after intra-state conflict. Although it has been recognised that education can contribute to reconciliation, questions remain regarding the nature of this contribution. This thesis aims to theoretically analyse the role of formal schooling in reconciliation, before presenting two contemporary post-conflict cases - Bosnia and Herzegovina and Northern Ireland - in order to identify how education is contributing to reconciliation processes in practice. This thesis will show that education has the potential to contribute both negatively and positively in reconciliation processes. It will argue, then, that in the cases of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Northern Ireland, this role is primarily negative, and will present the reasons for this argument. This thesis will further show that in order for education to play a positive role in reconciliation processes, it is dependent on a wide range of conditions, not only across all levels of education itself, from governance to substance, but also across communities, and societies as a whole.