CAPAZ | Events
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The researcher Dr. Kristina Dietz, linked to the Institute of Latin American Studies (LAI) at Freie Universität Berlin and representative of this institute at CAPAZ, will preside over the conversation entitled “Participatory Democracy, Territorial Conflicts and Popular Consultation”, on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. at the UNIMINUTO Calle 80 headquarters in Bogotá. Admission is free until full capacity is reached.

For additional information, please contact the event organiser directly: UNIMINUTO / Research Seedbed: Territory and Territoriality in Resistance

(Text: Claudia Maya. English version: Tiziana Laudato)



Photo: ARTBO

As part of the exhibition “Future Inheritance -> The New Normal” as part of the ARTBO (International Art Fair of Bogotá) Festival, students and teachers from Universidad del Rosario, Universidad de los Andes, Freie Universität Berlin and FARC-EP ex-combatants will present the musical workshop and discussion session entitled “Between Spear guns and Accordions: FARC-EP and their music (1988-2018)”.

The event is free of charge and will take place on July 25, 2019 at the ARTBO Sala Salitre in Bogotá, Colombia (Avenida El Dorado No. 68D-35).

Following the discussion session-workshop, there will be a guided tour of the exhibition.

The event is part of the CAPAZ-supported research project “Between rifles an accordions: A database of music produced by FARC-EP (1988-2018)”, whose objective is the compilation, systematisation, analysis and diffusion of the FARC-EP musical production. The study was coordinated by professor and researcher Rafael Quispe from Universidad del Rosario, with the participation of researchers from Universidad de los Andes, Freie Universität Berlin, and former FARC-EP combatants.

(Text: Claudia Maya. English version: Tiziana Laudato)


Berlin workshop on the construction and spaces for memory

Participants in the Berlin workshop together with German artist Horst Hoheisel (o.t.r.). Photo: Gabriel Ruíz.


On 15 and 16 July 2019, the Institute of Latin American Studies (LAI) attached to the German Freie Universität Berlin (FU) hosted researchers from Colombia, Germany, Spain, Chile, Argentina and Ecuador during the workshop entitled “Commemoration and Remembrance: Processes of construction of historical memory and legitimacy of the State”.

The workshop was coordinated by the CAPAZ Institute, the Research Group on Conflict and Peace at Universidad de Medellín, the LAI at FU Berlin with the support of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation.

The researchers presented their work around the theme of the workshop, discussed methodological aspects of studies on memory and addressed different case studies.

There was also scope for epistemological analysis of how memory is constructed, both by state institutions and by various social sectors, for which memory is a means of political struggle.

The workshop ended with a conversation with the German artist Horst Hoheisel, who presented some of his works in different countries around the world and motivated reflection on the idea of the counter-monument as an artistic form of fleeting remembrance that is not tied to a place.

The conversation and discussions allowed the group of participants to debate disputes over memory, not only in societies facing transition processes, but also in those where the very concept of memory is problematic because violence is still present.

(Text: Gabriel Ruiz – Universidad de Medellín/LAI. Revision: Claudia Maya. English version: Tiziana Laudato)


Seminario sobre medio ambiente y paz organizado por CAPAZ, los Andes y la fundación Heinrich Böll

El Instituto Colombo-Alemán para la Paz – CAPAZ, la Universidad de los Andes y la fundación Heinrich Böll en Colombia invitan al seminario titulado “¿El medio ambiente como víctima de la paz? deforestación y conservación de biodiversidad”.

Los paneles discutirán problemáticas socioambientales en el contexto del conflicto armado colombiano y la construcción de paz en el país. Algunas temáticas serán abordadas, como la deforestación, los asuntos del desarrollo y las políticas públicas relacionadas con la relación entre sociedad, medio ambiente, construcción de paz y conservación.

Se destaca la participación de investigadoras, investigadores, periodistas, representantes de organizaciones sociales y fundaciones defensoras del medio ambiente en diferentes territorios de Colombia.

Martes, 6 de agosto de 2019

2:00 p.m. a 6:00 p.m.

Salón SD-1003 – Edificio Julio Mario Santo Domingo, Universidad de los Andes – Bogotá, Colombia


Entrada libre / Consulte el programa del seminario (en español) / Más información y contacto: /


Workshop on the experiences and challenges of political participation and democracy

Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (PUJ) hosted the seminar-workshop “Fighting violence with words“, organized by the German-Colombian Peace Institute – CAPAZ and the Dutch Institute for Multiparty Democracy in Colombia (NIMD), with the support of the Alfredo Vázquez Carrizosa Institute of Human Rights and Peacebuilding, attached to PUJ.

The seminar took place in Bogotá on June 12 and 13, 2019. It was attended by representatives of social organizations, social leaders who have promoted spaces for dialogue, political participation, and non-violent conflict resolution in different scenarios and regions in Colombia.

Political Participation, Democracy and Peacebuilding

Photo Claudia Maya

Prof. Dr. Stefan Peters, Academic Director of CAPAZ participated in the first day of the seminar-workshop. His talk was aimed at analysing and discussing the different forms of political participation, specifically democratic participation, and its relationship to peacebuilding.

According to Peters, peace in Colombia is now a violent form of peace. In this respect, he emphasized two latent needs: to guarantee the security conditions for political participation, and to train citizens on issues such as mechanisms of participation, representation or democracy.

He proposed three approaches to the issue of successful political participation; approaches based within education, social justice, and violence. The discussion focused mainly on the theme of education.

Some participants, who lead processes of political participation in their communities, validated the importance of education in these issues, but emphasized the need for dialogue to rethink current educational models, especially in Colombia’s current historical moment of the peace process.

They highlighted the educational and training processes in issues of political participation developed in Colombia’s different territories, and the role of social leaders in communities, regarding pedagogy for democracy and peace.

The conclusion was that valuable knowledge is generated in the regions and localities, beyond the academic spaces in the universities.

Photo Claudia Maya

The school curriculum, which includes the peace programme, was questioned. Those who teach this programme need to be trained, as the educators are not sufficiently trained and the contents are taught in one hour per week at the most, generally and without any special emphasis.

The group of participants also focused on the issue of security and violence in the territories related to political participation. Representatives of the indigenous peoples of the Amazon stated that some mechanisms such as La Minga or tutela have been the only means of participation made available to these communities.

The participants expressed their disagreement with the way the central government ignores the realities of territories and communities when designing or applying guidelines. This is critical, given the cases of cronyism and corruption in institutions such as the Government Councils or the Registry Office. Participation exists but there is no transparency in the exercise of democracy.

Agendas for peaceful conflict resolution and democracy

Mauricio Sánchez, NIMD researcher focused his talk on questions such as: what conflicts are, how we deal with them, and what tools can enable their resolution.

He presented the project entitled “Spaces apt for multiparty and multiactor dialogue“, developed by NIMD in different parts of Colombia. This exercise gave rise to some reflections on the possibility of changing policies to make them more programmatic and focused on advocacy.

Photo Claudia Maya

“It’s not that we’re new or that nothing has been done, nor is it that we’re discovering new things,” said Sanchez. The problem in Colombia is that there are no processes of continuity and that international cooperation sometimes takes an interventionist view in the territories.

The role of the mass media was also questioned in this sense, given that democracy and its achievements are not always part of the media agenda. As one of the participants put it: “We should be doing democracy every day.”

The first day ended with a group workshop led by representatives of the Corporación Otra Escuela, to develop skills related to interpersonal relationships and coexistence, based on encounters and positions in situations that generate conflicts, to resolve them in an assertive manner.

Political and social leaderships

During the second day, the participants of the seminar exchanged their experiences in groups, based on three situations: 1) identify a personal conflict in terms of political participation, 2) which of the tools shared during the previous day can be used to reach a situation of cooperation or conflict resolution, and 3) which was your experience in this seminar.

Soraya Bayuelo, coordinator of the Montes de María Communications Collective and organizer of the Montes de María Audiovisual Festival, was in charge of bringing the seminar-workshop to a close.

The collective develops processes of memory building through cinema and audiovisual media. She presented a video on the work of the collective in her region and shared a heartfelt reflection on memory as a vehicle for transmitting and catalysing identities.

Photo Claudia Maya

In the context of Colombia’s armed conflict, Soraya Bayuelo did not absolve the so-called perpetrators of their responsibility, but stressed that it is more about the healing effect of memory on the victims.

Memory dynamizes words and dialogue. Through the narrations of the victims, through the ways in which the facts are told, knowledge about the armed conflict in Colombia is gained from experience and channels of communication are consolidated with incidence in the regions, through the exercise of community journalism.

“They kill our leaders, because they know that when they do, the communities lose their voice,” stated Bayuelo. Narration is the natural expression of memory and serves the victims to give them their place in history.

(Text: Claudia Maya / English version: Tiziana Laudato)






CAPAZ Territorial School in Pasto: Community experiences for peacebuilding in southwestern Colombia

The CAPAZ Territorial School took place from June 10 to 14, 2019 in Pasto, Nariño and was coordinated by the German Colombian Peace Institute – CAPAZ, Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia – Pasto Campus, Pastoral Social in Pasto, and the Heinrich Böll Foundation in Colombia.

The school was conceived as a training exercise and second phase of the CAPAZ-supported exploratory study led by research groups: La Minga and Indesco, attached to Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia based in Pasto.

The researcher and director of the CAPAZ Territorial School, Israel Biel reported on the findings of that initial investigation, which highlighted, among other things, the absence of the State precisely in the most vulnerable and complex territories in Nariño. “We therefore proposed a second phase of the research project that consisted of creating this territorial school taking into account that, if institutions and peace building mechanisms were going to be absent in these more conflictive areas, we had to bring the social actors (…) here to the university”, stated Biel.

Ángela Castillo, researcher and teacher at the school told us, “In the study, we wanted to explore what the people expected when ex-combatants arrived in Tumaco. We conducted this study and, based on the results, decided that we had to continue to advocate on these issues”.

You may also like (article in Spanish): “Community experiences for peacebuilding in southwestern Colombia”

Photo: Escuela Territorial CAPAZ in Pasto

In order to strengthen the capacities of local actors through education, the school convened a group of 25 participants made up of social leaders, human rights defenders, ex-combatants, and students. For Adolfo López, social leader of the Nariño region and student at the school, “it is important for there to be trained leaders who will show society and the country what is happening in our region”.

Cultural and academic programme

Based on the findings, the school curriculum was designed based on the following thematic axes: human rights, political participation, socio-economic alternatives for development, truth and justice, and construction of the social fabric.

Read the programme of the Escuela Territorial CAPAZ (in Spanish).

The teaching staff was made up of researchers from the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia – Pasto Campus, Pastoral Social in Pasto, and the regional branch of the Commission for the Clarification of Truth, Coexistence and Non-Repetition.

The school’s academic agenda was complemented by cultural events. Concerts and a play on forgiveness and reconciliation promoted the integration and exchange of knowledge and experiences through art.

Photo: Escuela Territorial CAPAZ in Pasto

Once the workshops had been completed, the students highlighted the organization of the school, the high standard of the teaching staff, and the relevance of the topics addressed. Of special importance was meeting each other and the possibility of expressing concerns in an academic space different from the territory itself. As put by Martha Zapata, ex-combatant and a student at the school: “I learned how to replicate what I learned in each one of the communities as a contribution to the peace process”.




Here is the institutional video that brings together the experiences shared at the CAPAZ Territorial School, produced by the Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia – Pasto Campus (in Spanish).

Watch the audio-visual briefing note on the CAPAZ Territorial School published by CNC Noticias, the information service at Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia (in Spanish).

Watch the video interview with Angela Castillo (Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia Pasto Campus) and Mario Vallejo (Pastoral Social, Pasto), published by the “Voces de nuestra gente” programme by Universidad Cooperativa de Colombia (in Spanish).

(Text: Claudia Maya/English Version: Tiziana Laudato)


Knowledge Production in Transitional Societies: the Case of the Colombian Peace Process

The Administrative Director of the CAPAZ Institute, Dr. Carlos Nupia presents his talk entitled “Knowledge Production in Transitional Societies: the Case of the Colombian Peace Process” on Wednesday, 10 July 2019 at 5:00 p.m. at Technische Universität München in Munich, Germany.

The presentation will analyze some theoretical approaches to understand the role of the production and use of knowledge in the case of the Colombian peace process. Based on evidence provided by this case, it will highlight three analytical challenges that emerge when knowledge is studied in relation to peace: the contribution of territorial perspective to the reconfiguration of disciplinary peace studies, the interaction between local and scientific knowledge as a mechanism to reintegrate former combatants, and the influence of the transformative approach for designing innovation policies that promote transformative change.

Abstract & Bio

“Knowledge Production in Transitional Societies: the Case of the Colombian Peace Process”:

Wednesday, 10 July 2019, 5:00 p.m.

Room 370, MCTS – Munich Center for Technology in Society – Technische Universität München


Taller en Berlín sobre procesos de construcción de memoria histórica y legitimidad del Estado

Los días 15 y 16 de julio de 2019 tendrá lugar en Berlín, Alemania el taller  titulado “Conmemoración y Rememoración. Procesos de construcción de memoria histórica y legitimidad del Estado”, organizado por la Facultad de Ciencias Sociales y Humanas de la Universidad de Medellín, el Instituto Colombo-Alemán para La Paz – CAPAZ y el Instituto LAI (Lateinamerika-Institut), adscrito a la universidad Freie Universität Berlin, con el respaldo de la Fundación Alexander von Humboldt.

Las ponencias discutirán aspectos de la memoria histórica y la construcción de relatos y diversos discursos de la verdad de víctimas y sus familiares, a partir de algunos casos en países como Colombia, Chile y durante el Franquismo. Juliana González, Colaboradora Científica del Instituto CAPAZ presentará su ponencia sobre las luchas de las mujeres por la memoria en las comisiones de la verdad.

Lugar: Boltzmann Straße 1 (Metro U3, parada Freie Universität -Thielplatz-) Berlín, Alemania.

Consulte el programa del taller (en español)



The workshop entitled “Transitional Justice and Memory: Colombia in Latin American Perspective” will be held in Eichstätt, Germany, on 11 and 12 July 2019. From an interdisciplinary perspective, the workshop will address the general theme of memory, in panels that will discuss specific problems of the Colombian context, such as the relationship between memory and transitional justice; the narratives of memory in the local context; memory and the construction of territorial peace; memory and the discourses of truth in the reparation of victims of the armed conflict.

There will also be an approach to the issue of memory based on justice in indigenous communities, intersectionality and gender inequalities.

CAPAZ Academic Director Prof. Dr. Stefan Peters, who is also Professor of Peace Studies at Justus Liebig University of Giessen, is one of the workshop organisers and participant of the first panel.

Juliana Gonzalez Villamizar, CAPAZ research collaborator will also present a paper on the second day of the event.

The workshop is an invitation from the Central Institute for Latin American Studies (ZILAS) of the Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt, an associate member of CAPAZ; the CAPAZ itself, the Peace Chair of the Justus Liebig University Giessen, the Hanns Seidel Stiftung Foundation and the proFOR+ programme (KU Eichstätt-Ingolstadt).

Los días 11 y 12 de julio de 2019 tendrá lugar en Eichstätt, Alemania el taller titulado “Justicia Transicional y memoria: Colombia en perspectiva latinoamericana”.


Final programme (in Spanish).


Organised by:

Prof. Dr. Thomas Fischer

Katholische Universität Eichstätt-Ingolstadt:

Prof. Dr. Stefan Peters

Justus Liebig University Giessen / Instituto CAPAZ /




The German-Colombian Peace Institute – CAPAZ, in partnership with the Justus Liebig University Geissen, UNIMINUTO, and the ZiBB e.V. Centre (Zentrum für internationale Bildung und Begegnungen e.V.) will hold a lectures and discussion session on the current situation of human rights and the exploitation of natural resources in Colombia (title in German: Gewalt im Frieden – zur aktuellen Menschenrechtssituation und Ressourcenausbeutung in Kolumbien).

The event will take place on Monday, June 24, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. at the ZiBB e.V. Centre in Giessen (Hannah-Arendt-Straße 6-10, 35394 D-Gießen). Admission is free.


The objective of the event is to inform those interested in Giessen and its surroundings about the current political situation in Colombia, specifically regarding human rights and activities involving the exploitation of natural resources.


Pilar Mendoza, PhD and Master of Sociology (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris), graduated in Social Communication from Universidad Central de Colombia. She has directed her research to urban sociology, the informal economy, forced displacement, peace and conflict research, and memory studies, from an interdisciplinary perspective. Professor Mendoza will give her talk entitled: Der Friedensprozess in Kolumbien: unvollendet, ständig unter Beschuss… und trotzdem in Kraft.

Felipe Corral Montoya, researcher associate of the group “CoalExit” at Technische Universität Berlin. His research focuses on the political economy of the mining-energy sector and the coal economy in Colombia. The researcher will present his talk entitled: Rohstoffausbeutung in Kolumbien – Wegbereiter oder Hindernis für einen nachhaltigen und umfassenden Frieden?

Information and contact (in German)

(Text: Claudia Maya. English version: Tiziana Laudato)