(Posted November 10, 2023)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. — The Baker Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies at Juniata College will host a discussion, “Israel/Palestine Conflict: Roads to System Transformation,” on Tuesday, November 14, at 6 p.m. Free and open to the public, the event will take place in the Ellis Ballroom, located on the second floor of Ellis Hall at Juniata College.   

This event will be led by two peace and conflict studies authorities, Lisa Schirch, chair in peace studies at the University of Notre Dame, and Richard Rubenstein, professor emeritus of conflict resolution and public affairs at George Mason University. Schirch and Rubenstein will present live via Zoom for this event. 

“At a time of intense disagreement and extreme polarization around the Israel/Palestinian conflict issues coupled with profound grief and struggle to process this pain, the Baker Institute at Juniata College offers this educational space to understand the evolving issues of the conflict and to find ways for peace and conflict resolution,” said Zia Haque, director of the Baker Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies. “I invite our community members to join us in the difficult conversations to see how we can overcome our mutual differences with humility and grace.” 

Following the October 7 attack by Hamas on Israel, the Israeli military began a counteroffensive. In the weeks that have followed, a devastating crisis has unfolded. This campus discussion is to provide an informative platform for gaining insights into this conflict’s evolving complexities with a discussion of pathways to peace and conflict resolution. 

Schirch is a political scientist by training with three decades of experience in peacebuilding research, policy advocacy, practice, and teaching. Her current research focuses on the positive roles of technology in peacebuilding. She is a senior research fellow with the Toda Peace Institute, an independent, nonpartisan institute committed to advancing a more just and peaceful world through policy-oriented peace research and practice. In this role, she coordinates with civil society and technology companies to experiment and innovate new technologies that can scale social cohesion.   

Rubenstein holds degrees from Harvard University, Oxford University (where he was a Rhodes Scholar), and Harvard Law School. He is a faculty member and former director of George Mason University’s Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, the nation’s oldest and largest conflict studies program. Since the 1970s, Rubenstein has been active in movements for peace, racial equality, and social justice. He is the author of several books on religious disputes, both violent and non-violent.   

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.