On 7 and 8 August, the workshop ‚Contributing to Social Cohesion Through Development Cooperation – Trends, Approaches and Challenges‘ took place at the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE). A growing number of projects in development cooperation addresses social cohesion. DIE has been increasingly investigating social cohesion with a particular focus on African societies within the project „Social Cohesion in Africa“ since 2018.
During the workshop, participants active in development work and research from different national and international institutes exchanged their knowledge on the topic. Among the participating institutions were GIZ (German Corporation for International Cooperation GmbH), KfW (Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau), UNDP (United Nations Development Programme), UNECA (United Nations Economic Commission for Africa), SDC (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation), FriEnt (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Frieden und Entwicklung), LSE (London School of Economics and Political Science) und SeeD (The Centre for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development).
The workshop focused on the definition of social cohesion and its measurement. Further, participants discussed drivers of social cohesion and its importance for development cooperation. The subsequent presentation of specific programmes yielded practical insights into their experiences regarding the implementation of such programmes and opened the concluding round of discussion. Significant challenges regarding the strengthening of social cohesion were identified and it was specified what different sectors can learn from each other. The workshop fostered the international dialogue on the topic, brought together a variety of different perspectives and facilitated the exchange between research and practice on social cohesion in development policy.