People-Centred Security and Sustainable Development in the Colombian-Venezuelan Borderlands
2 May 09:00
Pembroke College, Oxford
The Colombian-Venezuelan borderlands currently hold a central place in national and international political affairs. The mass arrival of Venezuelan migrants and refugees - as well as Colombian return-migrants - is a highly visual impact of the crisis in Venezuela, while the relationship between the two countries is marked by fractured diplomatic relations, mutual distrust, and periodic border closures. The recent focus on the borderland region nevertheless obscures two important facts. Firstly, that the Colombian-Venezuelan borderlands face a variety of challenges that are exacerbated - rather than caused - by the current mass arrivals. Secondly, that territorially-grounded perspectives about these challenges are often absent from policy discussions.
This cross-stakeholder forum therefore focused on deepening knowledge about cross-border dynamics by drawing on perspectives from members of civil society, the international community, and government. The forum was supplemented and supported by CONPEACE's analytical frameworks that are grounded in the concept of people-centred security, an approach to security that takes into account the daily experiences and perceptions of individuals and communities. The deliberations built on prior CONPEACE research and events, exploring transnational, national, regional, as well as local approaches to people-centred security and sustainable development in the borderlands.