Conflict Analysis Tools

The following tools have been selected from Chapter 2 of the Resource Pack. They have been chosen according to the following criteria:

  • Sufficient documentation to describe the tool adequately;
  • Each tool was used by at least one organisation;
  • Tools cover both micro- and macro-level conflict analysis;
  • Tools represent a wide range of approaches to conflict analyses.

Although the team behind the Resource Pack strived to document the practice and experience of smaller Southern-based organisations a brief glance at the list of tools reveals that most have been developed by Northern NGOs and donor agencies. This list is not comprehensive and will need to be further adapted to each organisation and each context. Rather than either choosing one tool ‘off the rack’ or creating an entirely new tool we strongly encourage organisations to tailor relevant elements of existing tools to develop appropriate hybrids.

DEV = Development
HA = Humanitarian Assistance
PB = Peacebuilding
FP = Foreign Policy

1) Strategic Conflict Assessment – DFID, DEV

  • Purpose: Country/regional strategic planning, can also be applied to projects/ programmes
  • Level: Regional, national, local
  • Potential Users: Multilateral agencies – desk officers
  • Assumptions: Combine political and economic dimensions; greed/grievance; structures and actors
  • Methodology: Combination of desk study and field consultations
  • Resources: Assessment team (at least 5 people) and consultation meetings in-country

2) Benefits/Harms Handbook – CARE, DEV/HA

  • Purpose: Analysis, impact assessment and project (re)design
  • Level: Local – mainly project level
  • Potential Users: NGO project managers, field staff
  • Assumptions: Focus on rights-based approach
  • Methodology: Desk-based and field research and possible workshop consultations
  • Resources: Varies – few hours in emergencies to more detailed workshops / consultations

3) Conflict Analysis Framework – World Bank, DEV

  • Purpose: Country strategic planning
  • Level: National, can also be adapted to (sub) regional
  • Potential Users: Multilateral organisation desk staff / planners
  • Assumptions: Focus on socio-economic dimensions of conflict
  • Methodology: Checklist; Desk studies, workshops, stakeholder consultations, consultants
  • Resources: Full CAF analysis resource intensive (workshops, consultations, consultants); but can be simplified

4) Conflict Analysis and Response Definition – FEWER, PB

  • Purpose: Early warning, country strategic planning
  • Level: National, local
  • Potential Users: Diplomats, donor desk officers, NGOs
  • Assumptions: Focus on conflict dynamics
  • Methodology: Ongoing analysis by local civil society organisations
  • Resources: Modest for desk study; more for training or workshops

5) EC Checklist for Root Causes of Conflict – European Commission, DEV

  • Purpose: Early warning, strategic and programme planning
  • Level: National, regional
  • Potential Users: Multi- and bilateral donor desk officers, diplomatic actors
  • Assumptions: Focus on structural root causes of conflict
  • Methodology: Checklist; external research capacity
  • Resources: Limited as mainly desk-based

6) Working with Conflict: Skills and Strategies for Action: Responding to Conflict – Peacebuilders

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, programme planning
  • Level: Local, national
  • Potential Users: Local and INGO staff, field and headquarters
  • Assumptions: Focus on understanding conflicts
  • Methodology: Collection of tools for participatory conflict analysis
  • Resources: Limited depending on format (workshop, consultation meetings etc.)

7) Making Sense of Turbulent Contexts: Analysis for Humanitarian Actors – World Vision, DEV/HA

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, project planning
  • Level: National, regional
  • Potential Users: NGO emergency response, development and advocacy staff
  • Assumptions: Focus on chronic political instability, dovetails with Do No Harm
  • Methodology: Collection of tools, flexible application
  • Resources: Variable, depending on use of tools, desk study or consultations

8) Do No Harm/Local Capacities for Peace Project – CDA

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, project monitoring and impact assessment
  • Level: Local
  • Potential Users: Donor, NGO (international and local) staff
  • Assumptions: Focus on dividers and connectors in conflict
  • Methodology: Workshop, integration into standard procedures
  • Resources: Limited, for workshop

9) Conflict and Policy Assessment Framework – Clingendael Institute, DEV/F

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, country strategic planning
  • Level: National, sectoral
  • Potential Users: Donor and embassy staff
  • Assumptions: Focus on indicators of internal conflict and state failure
  • Methodology: External research capacity, workshops
  • Resources: Costs of preparing for and holding workshops, can include external consultant involvement

10) Early Warning and Preventetive Measures – UN Staff College, ALL

  • Purpose: Early warning, conflict analysis, design
  • Level: National
  • Potential Users: UN staff (HQ and field), other donor agencies or NGOs
  • Assumptions: Focus on human security and human rights framework
  • Methodology: Training/workshop setting
  • Resources: Training materials, facilitation, workshop / training costs

11) Conflict Assessment Framework – USAID, DEV

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, country and project planning
  • Level: National
  • Potential Users: Donor desk officers, implementing partners, other US government officials
  • Assumptions: Broad scope, synthesis of other tools
  • Methodology: Desk study, workshop, follow up integration into programming strategy
  • Resources: For desk study, in country visit and follow-up work.

12) Conflict Analysis for Project Planning and Implementation – GTZ, DEV

  • Purpose: Conflict analysis, country and project planning
  • Level: National, project
  • Potential Users: Donor, NGO desk officers, project managers
  • Assumptions: Broad scope, synthesis of other tools
  • Methodology: Combination of desk study and empirical research, tools for participatory conflict analysis
  • Resources: Costs of organising workshops and consultation meetings

13) FAST Methodology – Swiss Peace, DEV/FP

  • Purpose: Early warning, risk assessments
  • Level: National, can be sub-regional
  • Potential Users: Government ministries, development agencies, NGOs, international organisations
  • Assumptions: Event data analysis (quantitative and qualitative)
  • Methodology: Field information collection, desk-based analysis
  • Resources: Resource intensive for maintaining local information networks and specialist analysis network

14) Better Programming Initiative – IFRC, HA

  • Purpose: Conflict assessment, training
  • Level: Programme; local, national, regional
  • Potential Users: Red Cross/Red Crescent National Societies, delegation and other staff
  • Assumptions: Focus on aid fostering long-term reconciliation and recovery
  • Methodology: Analysis and training
  • Resources: Depending on scope of assessment or length of training

Download the how to guide to conflict sensitivity: How To Guide on Conflict Sensitivity