Radical Realism: Building Positive Peace in Mexico

Our latest paper: Radical Realism: Building Positive Peace in Mexico gives a voice to leading practitioners and policymakers working on the front lines to build peace in Mexico, a country troubled by high levels of violence and corruption. 

It consists of 12 interviews, just a small sample of the many individuals engaged in peace related activities in Mexico. Reflecting the complexity of the issue, interview subjects ranged widely, from representatives of leading NGOs to government officials, scholars and members of the media.

Download Radical Realism: Building Positive Peace in Mexico (English, pdf)

The Spanish version of Radical Realism: Building Positive Peace in Mexico is available here

The interviews focus on Positive Peace—a radical concept because it suggests a different understanding of the conditions that lead to peace than is typically advanced. The eight factors identified by the Institute for Economics and Peace as essential to peace include well-functioning government, sound business environment, low levels of corruption, acceptance of the rights of others, high levels of human capital, good relations with neighbours, free flow of information and equitable distribution of resources. These factors were identified through a rigorous assessment, which compared over 4,700 variables with the Global Peace Index. What these factors suggest is that countries must advance more than a narrow-minded security agenda if they are to become more peaceful.

For Mexico, peace is both a radical and realistic goal to pursue. It is radical in the sense that positive peace upends conventional thinking about how peace should be conceptualized and pursued. It is realistic because Mexico has much strength to draw upon in seeking to become more peaceful. The interviews outlined in this paper examine these themes in greater detail, providing a snapshot of how Mexico can build the long-term drivers of peace.

From the wide-range of interviewees, several common themes emerged:

The key point, reiterated by all interview subjects, is the need to approach peace in a more holistic way. As the Institute for Economics and Peace defines it, positive peace is not just the absence of violence but also the presence of other factors that help societies realize their full potential. While the challenges faced by Mexico are great, so are the opportunities.


Download Radical Realism: Building Positive Peace in Mexico (English, pdf)

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