Certificate of Advanced Studies (CAS) in Civilian Peacebuilding Essentials

Get insights in research and practice of civilian peacebuilding and broaden your skills to work in fragile contexts.

Program overview

Civilian peacebuilding plays a crucial role in efforts to transform violent conflict, promote peace, rebuild war-torn societies and prevent the recurrence of violence. This postgraduate course provides a holistic understanding of civilian peacebuilding. It analyzes theories, concepts, debates, policies and practices in:

    • Peacebuilding & statebuilding
    • Gender in conflict & peacebuilding
    • Peacebuilding methodologies
    • Peace mediation
    • Dealing with the past & transitional justice
    • Business, conflict & human rights

    Your benefits

    • Reflect critically on peacebuilding practices
    • Link theoretical and conceptual inputs with your work activities
    • Acquire peacebuilding skills and tools
    • Benefit from a wide network of peacebuilding professionals

    Course methodologies include expert inputs, peer exchange, case studies, skills training and self-study.


    The course is designed for practitioners and academics interested in bridging their own experiences with current conceptual insights and practical knowledge on civilian peacebuilding.

    Structure of the program

    The CAS Civilian Peacebuilding Essentials is offered annually and runs from September to August. The course consists of five on-site modules and can be taken over one or two years (22 course days). On-site classes take place once a month (Friday and Saturday), the two 3-day trainings take place from Wednesday to Friday at swisspeace in Basel, Switzerland.

    Course methodologies include expert inputs, peer exchange, case studies, exercises, skills training and self-study.

    Course structure & dates 2017/18
    Course structure & dates 2016/17

    CAS, DAS and MAS framework


    Leading international scholars and experienced practitioners facilitate this program.

    Course Coordinators:
    Ursina Bentele
    & Franziska Sigrist, swisspeace

    Faculty list 2016/17
    Faculty list 2014/15
    Faculty list 2013/14
    Faculty list 2012/13

    Methodology & Assignments

    Assignments include writing a learning portfolio, an essay and a CAS final thesis linked to the thematic areas dealt with during the course.


    Successful participants are awarded a Certificate of Advanced Studies. This course can be taken as one module (20 ECTS) of the Diploma and Master of Advanced Studies in Civilian Peacebuilding programs offered by swisspeace and the University of Basel.

    Any questions about this program?

    Please take a look at the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ). If you cannot find the information you are looking for, our staff will happily answer your questions (contact us).