Peace & Security

We seek to understand atrocities and the politics of the use of force at all levels, from the local to the global. We investigate how to better anticipate, prevent and stop organized violence, and how outsiders might help rebuild order and peace. We work closely with practitioners in governments and international and civil society organizations, in Germany and beyond. We promote important debates and facilitate learning to improve policymaking and, ultimately, help save lives. 

Journal article

Germany’s Politics and Bureaucracy for Preventing Atrocities

Germany needs to address key weaknesses in its institutional setup before it can effectively contribute to the prevention of atrocities.


Great Game in the Indian Ocean

Growing competition and militarization are changing dynamics in the Indian Ocean. Europe needs to pay more attention to these developments.


Nowhere to Hide: The Logic of Chemical Weapons Use in Syria

How and why has the Assad régime persisted in using banned chemical weapons? This study draws on the most comprehensive dataset of chemical weapons attacks in Syria compiled to date to offer an analysis of the strategic rationale behind the attacks.


Security Assistance and Reform: Bringing the Politics Back In

Security assistance and security sector reform can only succeed if external supporters’ political engagement drives their technical projects, not vice versa.

Militias or Partners? Local, Hybrid and Sub-State Forces in Afghanistan and Iraq

Community or regional forces, militias, and other forms of sub-state or local security actors have long existed in Afghanistan and Iraq, and continue to proliferate. Recently, local, hybrid and sub-state forces have often proved to be a critical stopgap against anti-government forces in both countries. But how do these security gains balance against other potential side effects for governance, rule of law, or civilian protection? How do repeated cycles of militarizing local spaces affect local community dynamics and prospects for a sustainable peace?

Find out more about our three-year project


Bilal Bağ

Research Associate

Thorsten Benner


Sarah Bressan

Research Associate

Erica Gaston

Non-Resident Fellow

Theresa Lütkefend

Research Associate

Philipp Rotmann

Associate Director

Mario Schulz

Research Associate

Asena Baykal

Research Assistant

Sarah Brockmeier

Research Fellow

Julia Friedrich

Research Associate

Melissa Li

Research Associate

Garima Mohan

Non-Resident Fellow

Tobias Schneider

Research Fellow

Funding & Contact

Our current work on global peace and security is generously supported by the European Commission’s Horizon2020 research funding scheme, the Robert Bosch Foundation, the German Federal Foreign Office, the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO), the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, and the Jeyroudi Foundation. For previous projects, we received grants and support by the German Foundation for Peace Research, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the Volkswagen Foundation in cooperation with Compagnia di San Paolo and Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, the UN Secretariat’s Department for Peacekeeping Operations, the Friedrich Ebert and Heinrich Böll Foundations, as well as Humanity United.

For more information, please contact Philipp Rotmann.

PeaceLab: A Fresh Look at Crisis Prevention

On the PeaceLab blog, we discuss what a modern, comprehensive peace and security policy for Germany and Europe should look like. 

Learn more