Peace Polls

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Questions for the Peacemaker

Below are some of the practical questions to be addressed by those responsible for the peace process:

  • Which political parties, politicians, their staff, government officials, editors, journalists, broadcasters, academics, teachers, and community leaders take an interest in public opinion and would like to run polls on a peace process for their own, third party and/or public information? (Clearly if the answer to this first question is 'none' then it may not be possible to run a peace poll).
  • What questions do these people think can most usefully be asked in terms of 'problems' their 'solutions' and associated CBMs, etc., etc. in order to start, advance, strengthen or help consolidate a peace process?
  • Which Universities and academics have experience with surveys of public opinion in the region and have an interest in a peace process?
  • Which market research companies operate in the region and have undertaken polls amongst the relevant communities?
  • What polling has been done on a peace process?
  • What is the demographic profile of the relevant groups to the conflict in terms of total population, social geography, language, education, age and so on?
  • Are the chosen subcontractors independent of all third party and/or state policy or legal restrictions that might prevent them from working with certain groups?
  • Are the peace polls being designed to address matters of concern to the peace process with clearly understood research and public diplomacy objectives?
  • Is the work being undertaken with local input from different academic, political and community perspectives?
  • Can the local representatives work together to produce a common piece of research or should an outside facilitator be brought in to help co-ordinate their work?
  • Which newspapers are pro-peace process, have a cross community readership and/or will publish reports in co-operation with newspapers from other communities?
  • Are the results being published to make them available to academics, journalists and broadcasters for critical review and incorporation into other peace-building activities?
  • Which NGOs and IGOs have an interest in the region and could give financial and research policy support?