EUROCRIM edition:13 location:Budapest, Hungary date:4-7 September 2013
This presentation shares findings from a survey launched by the European Forum for Restorative Justice in 2013 as part of a European research project, called ALTERNATIVE, on developing alternative understandings of security and justice through restorative justice approaches to conflicts in intercultural settings.
In the understanding of this research, intercultural settings are not the same as ‘intercultural conflicts’, as the latter would imply that the existence of cultural difference is a problem in itself. A restorative approach aims to create possibilities for a balanced and respectful dialogue between parties in conflict. Are there any implications then for the practice of the fact that a conflict happens in an intercultural setting? How can practitioners be aware of and address the different perceptions, value systems, perspectives of conflicting parties? What can restorative justice approaches offer in these conflict settings? What are the consequences for the restorative practice if the conflict itself was based on hatred or bias because of cultural differences being present? These are some practice related questions the project would like to answer via action research in four different countries, and feed back findings to the theoretical work done in the first two years. As part of this theoretical grounding the research aimed to know more about already existing restorative justice programs and practices dealing with conflicts in intercultural settings. Therefore restorative justice practitioners were addressed across Europe to share their existing experience on this issue by answering a survey. The presentation will summarize the outcomes of this mapping exercise.