Trust and Conflict Transformation - An Analysis of the Baku Bae Peace Movement in Indonesia

Master's Thesis, 2009

118 Pages, Grade: B






1.1. Point of departure
1.2. The Baku Bae Peace Movement
1.2.1. The nature of the Baku Bae Peace Movement
1.2.2. Why choosing this case study?
1.3. Definitions of key terms
1.3.1. Trust
1.3.2. Conflict transformation
1.4. Structure of the paper

2.1. Social capital and trust
2.2. Trust
2.2.1. Trust and risk
2.2.2. Reasons for trusting
2.2.3. Approaches to trust building
2.2.4. Interpersonal and institutional trust
2.2.5. Functions of trust
2.3. Conflict and conflict transformation
2.3.1. Conflict
2.3.2. Conflict transformation
2.4. Principles of conflict transformation
2.5. Approaches in conflict transformation
2.5.1. Dialogue
2.5.2. Principled negotiation
2.5.3. Mediation
2.5.4. Training
2.6. Trust and conflict transformation
2.7. Lederach’s Pyramid Model of Peacebuilding
2.7.1. Levels of leadership
2.7.2. Approaches to peacebuilding
2.8. Allport’s Contact Hypothesis
2.9. Theoretical/conceptual frameworks

3.1. Problem statement
3.2. Research objectives and research questions
3.3. Rationales for and significance of the study
3.5. Data collection and analysis

4.1. Causes of conflict
4.1.1. Historical causes
4.1.2. Structural causes
4.1.3. Proximate causes
4.1.4. Immediate causes and triggers
4.2. Previous interventions
4.3. The Baku Bae Peace Movement
4.3.1. Major steps and processes of the Baku Bae Peace Movement
4.3.2. Why is it a success story?
4.4. A summary of stages and processes in the Baku Bae Movement
4.5. The Baku Bae Peace Movement through the theoretical lenses
4.5.1. Intergroup contact or inter-communication
4.5.2. Interactive problem-solving workshops (IPSWs)
4.5.3. Trust building
4.5.4. The trusted third party or mediator
4.5.5. The grassroots movement and people’s “mandate”
4.6. Research questions revisited

5.1. Summary of key findings
5.2. Suggestions for further research
5.3. Final thought



Table 1: Conflict Resolution v.s. Conflict Transformation

Table 2: A Model of State Reform and Conflict Transformation

Figure 1: Actors and Approaches to Peacebuilding


The writing of this paper benefited greatly from a number of institutions and persons to whom I would like to express my thanks. First of all, I wish to pay a very special tribute to the Nippon Foundation for having provided a full scholarship to me, so that I was able to attend this program. Without this substantial funding, this program would not have become a reality, let alone this paper. My gratitude also goes to Dr.

Victor Walle, Head of Department of Peace and Conflict Studies, the United Nations affiliated University for Peace (UPEACE), for his ongoing guidance and support. Moreover, I wish to extend my gratitude to Dr. Tony Karbo, my thesis advisor, for all the invaluable comments and suggestions on my paper. In addition, I would like to thank Professor John Paul Lederach for having helped clarify the concept of conflict transformation, and Professor Christopher Mitchell for having helped shape the original topic, so that it is manageable within the timeframe. Next, I owe a special thanks to all the professors whose courses I took at UPEACE, Costa Rica, and the Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines, for all the knowledge and skills that they have shared with me as well as other students in the spirit of a common goal of making this world a better place. The administrative staffs at UPEACE and the Ateneo de Manila University also deserve my sincere thanks for all the academic and administrative arrangements. I would also like to thank Mr. Balazs Kovacs for all the kind support and guidance from the start of the program and for his time spent with me sharing his thoughts and advice on my topic. Besides, I wish to extend my sincere thanks to Ms. Mary Thomas and other instructors at Ateneo Language Learning Center for all the encouragement and support, especially during the language training module at the start of the program. Ichsan Malik and Hamdi Muluk, the key informants about the Baku Bae Peace Movement, deserve my profound gratitude for having provided a number of useful documents related to the Movement.

My thanks also go to all my fellow classmates DIPS2008-2009 as well as other classmates at UPEACE in Costa Rica for being part of and having enriched my academic and social life experience. Further, I have been fortunate to have an extraordinary team of close friends—Sok Say, Chan Rotha, Ou Sivhuoch, Som Ratana and Meng Pokun, who have always expressed interest, support and encouragement. Also deserving of mention are my parents—both my side and my wife’s side—for all their support, encouragement and trust in me. Last but by no means least, I am indebted to my wife, Men Pheavy, and my lovely daughter, Vicheth Sonisa, for all their love, motivation, inspiration and reasons for my hard work, and for their patience, tolerance and understanding when I was away from them.

Trust and Conflict Transformation:

An analysis of the Baku Bae Peace Movement in Indonesia

Chapter One: Introduction

This chapter begins by introducing the topic of the paper and briefly describing the case study and the reasons for its selection. It then presents short definitions of the key terms used in the study. The chapter closes with a section on the outline of the thesis.

1.1. Point of departure

Conflict dates from the beginning of human history and will probably never end (Jeong, 2008, p. 3).

Conflict is part of human relationship. As societies change and develop, the nature and scope of conflict also evolve. In particular, the scope and dimension of conflict have tremendously changed from interstate to internal, ethnic, religious and community conflicts within states following the end of the Cold War. After the year 1945, there have been more wars and conflicts within states than between states (Henderson & Singer, 2000; Bachler, 2004; Matsuo, 2005; Kuroda, 2006). This has necessitated a change in approaches used to resolve the conflicts.

Compared to conflicts between states, conflicts within states such as civil war, ethnic, religious and community conflicts are much more complicated to resolve. For this kind of conflicts where people in the same country or community have experienced a tremendous loss of their loved one(s), gross human rights violations, and developed a deep hatred toward the other conflicting party, learning to relive together, coexist and cooperate is extremely difficult, if not impossible. As Bouka (2008) put it, “when the dust settles from those wars [civil wars] that bring countless cases of unimaginable violations of human rights, contending parties and their innocent victims, often women and children caught in a crossfire, have to relearn how to coexist and cooperate, rebuild their society, and foster solidarity, without which institutions, whether formal or informal, cannot be sustained” (pp. 7-8).

With an increase in this kind of conflicts, there is a need for more theoretical as well as empirical works to understand the dynamics of the conflicts and how to rebuild relationships between contending parties after the violence and conflicts are over.

Because conflict is a crack or fracture in a relationship, conflict transformation is about mending this crack. In the words of John Paul Lederach, “in conflict transformation relationships are central. Like the heart in the body, conflicts flow from and return to relationships” (2003, p.17). Therefore, in the transformation processes, being able to identify the fundamental elements which help restore human relationships is essential for the success of conflict transformation. For this reason, the present study is aimed at identifying these critical factors.

1.2. The Baku Bae Peace Movement

1.2.1. The nature of the Baku Bae Peace Movement

The Baku Bae Movement, named after the local children’s game, began its work in the Maluku Island following the eruption of the first conflict in early 2000 (Muluk & Malik, 2009). The term peace was avoided because at that time it meant surrender for both sides. The term Baku Bae was introduced instead because it was a “psychologically common language,” which also suggests a spirit of peace (Muluk & Malik, 2009, p. 94).

Grammatically, Baku means “each other” or “reciprocally” and Bae means “to be kind to others,” “making peace,” or “making friendships” (Muluk & Malik, 2009, p. 94). Quarreling children who want to resume their friendships again would say, “Let’s us be kind to each other” or “Let us Baku Bae.” The name of the movement, therefore, provided both sides with a common peace discourse which encouraged and enabled them to move on with the peace movement.

The Baku Bae Peace Movement was primarily based on the idea that the conflict could only be resolved by the conflicting parties themselves; that is, the people in Maluku (both Muslims and Christians). It was a bottom-up, grassroots movement mandated by the local people who were victimized by the conflict, who did not really understand the causes of the conflict, and who were eager to see the conflict end and live in peace and harmony again. Although it was initiated by the NGO activists, academicians and professionals, such as prominent NGO activists Ichsan Malik and Eliakim Sitorus, the success of the movement in de-escalating the violence and bringing about reconciliation process between the two contending communities was basically because of the nature of the movement itself. It was a movement with the involvement of all stakeholders at all levels and in all spheres, including the local people who were the victims of the conflict, youth, local and community leaders, religious leaders, lawyers, journalists, intellectuals, teachers, military and police personnel, NGOs, and businesspeople. In addition to the involvement of all stakeholders at the grassroots and middle-range levels, there was also an active engagement of leaders at the elite level as well as the international community (Panggabean, 2004; Muluk & Malik, 2009).

1.2.2. Why choosing this case study?

The Baku Bae Peace Movement in Ambon conflict in Maluku, Indonesia, was chosen as a case study in this research for the following reasons. First, this is an example of ethno-religious conflict between Muslims and Christians where the conflict had destroyed the relationships between them, which is what this study intends to understand. Second, the Baku Bae Peace Movement has been considered a successful movement to end violence, pursue peace and reconciliation. Therefore, analyzing this case will provide a number of good lessons learnt for future interventions. Third, the movement began at the grassroots level, which is an example of the bottom-up approach toward peacebuilding and conflict transformation. Findings from this study will shed some light on how to effectively mobilize the grassroots to support the cause of the peace movement.

1.3. Definitions of key terms

1.3.1. Trust

As will be discussed in the literature review section in the next chapter, trust is defined differently by different authors and in different fields of study. However, in this research, trust is defined as an individual’s belief in, and willingness to act on the basis of, the words, actions, and decision of another individual or an institution or system. Trust, in this sense, covers both the interpersonal and institutional levels.

1.3.2. Conflict transformation

The term conflict transformation has just recently gained wider support from both researchers and practitioners in the field of peace and conflict studies. It is not yet well studied and still developing. There are various definitions of the term by different authors. However, this study adopted a definition by John Paul Lederach as follows.

Conflict transformation is to envision and respond to the ebb and flow of social conflict as life-giving opportunities for creating constructive change processes that reduce violence, increase justice in direct interaction and social structures, and respond to real-life problems in human relationships (Lederach, 2003, p. 14, original emphasis).

1.4. Structure of the paper

This paper consists of five chapters. Chapter One introduces the topic of the study by presenting the case study and briefly defining the key terms used in this study. Chapter Two provides a detailed discussion of the key terms and a review of related literature. It also outlines the theoretical or conceptual frameworks used in this study. Chapter Three presents the problem statement, research objectives and questions, rationales for and significance of the study, scope and limitations of the study, and data collection and analysis. Chapter Four describes the case study in detail by presenting the causes of the conflict and the steps and processes of the peace movement; it is also devoted to the discussion and analysis of the case study, and the revisiting of the research questions. The fifth, and final, chapter summarizes the key findings, provides suggestions for further research and concludes the whole paper.

Chapter Two: Literature Review

This chapter begins by presenting various definitions of a broader concept— social capital, before examining the term trust in detail. It then discusses the terms conflict and conflict transformation and the dynamics between trust and conflict transformation. Lederach’s Pyramid Model of Peacebuilding and Allport’s Contact Hypothesis are outlined before the section on theoretical/conceptual frameworks concludes this chapter.

2.1. Social capital and trust

The broad concept underpinning the key concept in this study—trust—is social capital. Therefore, before looking closely at the term trust, it is significant to get a glimpse of the term social capital by looking at various definitions put forward by different scholars and practitioners. Social capital is not a new concept. It has been brought into the field of social sciences by a number of pioneers, including Lyda Judson Hanifan (1920), Jane Jacobs (1961), Pierre Bourdieu and Jean-Claude Passeron (1970), and Glenn Loury (1977) (Feldman & Assaf, 1999). The term social capital has been popularized in the past two decades by sociologist James Coleman and political scientist Robert Putnam. Putnam defines social capital as “the features of social organization, such as networks, norms, and trust, that facilitate coordination and cooperation for mutual benefit” (Putnam, 1993, p. 36).

Coleman’s definition of social capital is broader than that of Putnam. He includes both horizontal and vertical aspects of social capital. He defines social capital in terms of its function. According to Coleman, social capital “is not a single entity but a variety of different entities, with two elements in common: they all consist of some aspect of social structures, and they facilitate certain actions of actors—whether persons or corporate actors—within the structure. Like other forms of capital, social capital is productive, making possible the achievement of certain ends that in its absence would not be possible” (Coleman, 1988).

For Fukuyama, trust within a society serves as a primary factor in its prosperity, inherent competitiveness, and tendency toward democracy. Trust is a key measure of social capital and is accumulated through norms of reciprocity and successful cooperation in networks of civic engagement (Fukuyama, 1995). Reciprocity, civic duty, and moral obligation are essential to a successful and stable society.

Uphoff (2000) defines social capital as “an accumulation of various types of social, psychological, cognitive, institutional, and related assets that increase the amount or probability of mutually beneficial cooperative behavior that is productive for others, not just one’s self”. Social capital is thus subdivided into two main components: structural and cognitive. The first refers to the relationships, networks, and associations, or the institutional structures, vertical and horizontal, which connect people, while the latter includes values, norms, civic responsibility, expected reciprocity, charity, altruism and trust.

The World Bank looks at social capital as an important factor in economic and social development. According to the World Bank, “the social capital of a society includes the institutions, the relationships, the attitudes and values that govern interactions among people and contribute to economic and social development” (Krishnamurthy, 1999). Ismail Serageldin, Vice President of Special Programs of the World Bank, describes social capital as the following:

Social capital refers to the internal social and cultural coherence of society, the norms and values that govern interactions among people and the institutions in which they are embedded. Social capital is the glue that holds societies together and without which there can be no economic growth or human well-being. Without social capital, society at large will collapse, and today’s world presents some very sad examples of this (Grootaert, 1998; Feldman & Assaf, 1999; Grootaert & van Bastelaer, 2001, p. iii).

Therefore, social capital plays a significant role in socio-economic development of a society. It is embedded in the institutional, social and cultural structure of a society.

Social capital is subdivided into three dimensions: bonding, bridging and linking. As Halpern (2005) and Granovetter (1973) pointed out, bonding social capital (strong ties) refers to “the strength of reciprocal ties between individuals in a community,” whereas bridging social capital (weak ties) refers to “association across social cleavages” (as cited in Bouka, 2008, p. 11). Bonding social capital is “inward-looking” and useful for “building strong community identities,” and bridging social capital is “outward­looking” and can “build networks of network” (Shopeju & Ojukwu, 2008, p. 6). The third dimension of social capital is linking or synergy which refers to “relations between strata of society such as state-community relations or relationships between communities or institutions with unequal resources or power” (Bouka, 2008, p. 13). Therefore, it can be concluded that bonding and bridging social capital refers to horizontal relationships, while linking social capital emphasizes vertical ones.

In short, though different authors define social capital quite differently, all the definitions contain some common features, be they, social networks, trust, and norms of reciprocity. Social capital is the glue that holds a society together, with trust, networks and norms as its main characteristics. This study, however, is to understand the role of trust in conflict transformation in post-conflict countries. Therefore, the section that follows will look more deeply into the concept of trust by operationalizing it and presenting different theories and empirical studies on the concept.

2.2. Trust

Trust has become an extensively studied phenomenon across an array of academic disciplines, including economics, management, psychology, ethics, sociology and political science (Lewicki & Tomlinson, 2003, December; Colquitt, Scott & LePine, 2007; Buchan, Croson & Johnson, n.d.). As stated by Buchan et al (n.d.), trust plays a key role in fostering cooperation between and among individuals and groups, and has a positive influence on economic performance of businesses, countries and even regions. “Trust,” as Dasgupta mentions “is of much importance precisely because its presence or absence can have a strong bearing on what we choose to do and in many cases what we can do” (as cited in Kay & Hagan, 2003, p. 484, original emphasis).

That trust has been explored in a multidisciplinary perspective has not only multiplied and strengthened the literature on the concept; it has also created “confusion” about defining and conceptualizing this concept (Colquitt et al, 2007). Trust is therefore defined and conceptualized according to the discipline and the context of each study. Rousseau and her colleagues define trust as “a psychological state comprising the intention to accept vulnerability based upon positive expectations of the intentions or behavior of another,” while Lewicki and his colleagues define trust as “an individual’s belief in, and willingness to act on the basis of, the words, actions, and decision of another” (as cited in Lewicki & Tomlinson, 2003, December, para. 2). These two definitions of trust have two common aspects: the willingness to accept vulnerability and the positive expectations. This suggests that the trustor has positive expectations of the actions or behaviors of the trustee but is willing to be vulnerable to those actions or behaviors of the trustee. Both definitions, moreover, seem to conceptualize trust as a phenomenon at the interpersonal level or trust in individuals.

From the sociological perspective, different levels of the concept of trust are incorporated into its definitions. For example, Misztal defines trust as “confidence in the reliability of a person or system, regarding a given set of outcomes or events...,” and Barber defines trust as the belief that “individuals and institutions will act appropriately and perform competently, responsibly, and in a manner considerate of our interests” (as cited in Cook, 1997). The commonality of these two definitions is that they both distinguish different levels of trust: the personal level and the system/institutional level. Hence, trust also exists at other levels, beyond the interpersonal level (Cook, 1997). According to Lewis and Weigert, from the sociological standpoint, “trust must be conceived as a property of collective units.. .not of isolated individuals. Being a collective attribute, trust is applicable to the relations among people rather than to their

psychological states taken individually” (as cited in Cook, 1997, p. 5). “[C]hanging social conditions,” Cook asserts, “can produce or promote changes in trust” (1997, p. 5).

2.2.1. Trust and risk

Is trusting someone a risky choice to take? In most of the literature on trust, according to Eckel and Wilson (2004), trusting a person is a risky decision to make, when taking into account whether or not the person is trustworthy, which is not different from gambling or making a risky investment. However, the results of a study by Eckel and Wilson (2004) proved that this is not always the case. In their examination of the relationship between risk attitudes and the decision to trust an anonymous partner by using a series of laboratory experiments focusing on a “two-person sequential, binary trust game,” Eckel and Wilson found “no statistical relationship between the behavioral risk measures and the decision to trust” (2004, p. 447). Although this suggests that the decision to trust a counterpart is not very much thought of as a risky choice to make, Eckel and Wilson are quite doubtful about the results. The decision to trust a counterpart, according to Eckel and Wilson, is instead made with reference to the reliable available information about the counterpart, including sex, ethnicity and attractiveness. Trust is not viewed as a problem of risk, “but rather as a problem of judgment” (Eckel and Wilson, 2004, p. 464). The results of the study showed that judgment is one of the conditions for a person to decide whether or not to trust someone else, although this may not apply to all the situations as people resort to different reasons when making a decision to trust an anonymous person. However, generally speaking, we take risks when we trust someone (Govier, 1998; Sztompka, 1999). When we trust someone, we allow ourselves to be vulnerable to that person because that person may let us down or betray us, which is harmful to us. Therefore, trust is not always a good thing.

2.2.2. Reasons for trusting

Why does a person trust another person? In a discussion about trust and its relatives, Hardin (2006) refers to trust as encapsulated interests. As he puts it, “trust is a three-part relation: A trusts B to do, or with respect to, X” (2006, p. 19). I trust someone not only because I believe that it is that person’s interest to be trustworthy, but also because “my own interests are encapsulated in the interests” of that person, that is, my interests are “partly his or her own interests” (Hardin, 2006, p. 19). For this reason, how much I trust a person is limited to how much I think my interests are encapsulated in that person’s interests. According to Hardin, a person chooses to encapsulate another person’s interests in his or her own for different reasons. First is the motivation to maintain the ongoing relationship. I trust you not only because of the present fulfillment that this relationship gives but also because of what might result from our ongoing relationship into the future. Second is friendship or love. I may take your interests as partly my interests because I consider you as my friend or I love you. And third is reputation. Because I value my reputation in dealing with other people and my reputation may be harmed if I am untrustworthy, I might partly encapsulate your interests in my own, although I do not have any direct relationship with you.

Moreover, in understanding the grounds for trust, Doris Brothers, as cited by Govier (1998), provides four criteria for evaluating the “maturity” of reasons for trust. According to Brothers, these four criteria are referred to as mature when they are “realistic, abstract, complex, and differentiated” (Govier, 1998, p. 119). First, by realistic, Brothers explains that the criteria used for judging trust are not “perfectionistic,” but realistic. This means that a person who is trustworthy, to be reasonable and realistic, can be “basically trustworthy without being perfect or trustworthy in every minute respect” (Govier, 1998, p. 119). Second, the criteria used to evaluate the maturity of grounds for trust are abstract, rather than concrete, which is based on size, attractiveness, or material possessions. This, as Brothers asserts, implies that the criteria incorporate the morally relevant aspects such as “truthfulness, integrity, or adherence to valued principles” (Govier, 1998, p. 119). Third, by complex, the criteria to judge trust are mature when they recognize the “multifaceted nature of the human personality” (as cited in Govier, 1998, p. 119), meaning that when situations change, the level of trustworthiness of people may vary, which is appropriate and acceptable. And the final criterion for judging the maturity of reasons for trust—differentiation—refers to “the ability to discriminate between characteristics and between people so as to avoid oversimplification, such as sweeping generalizations about the significance of minor traits or the stereotyping of people on the basis of religious, racial, or ethnic group” (Govier, 1998, p. 119).

2.2.3. Approaches to trust building

How does trust between two parties develop? What is needed to build a trust relationship between two people? In a study to understand the process involved in the establishment of a trust relationship, Swinth (1967) used Prisoner’s Dilemma (PD) games to test three hypotheses. The results of the study suggested that both participants need to give something to the relationship before trust is established between them, yet most people are unable or unwilling to signal their desire to trust or to take such a risk. Therefore, before two people choose whether or not to trust each other, “they should be given the opportunity to signal their desires” (Swinth, 1967, p. 343). As concluded by Swinth (1967) based on the results of the study, “[w]hether it be in interpersonal relations or international relations, the participants cannot be expected ever to trust each other in critical moments if these constitute their only opportunity to interact. They need a period in which they can carry out the coordinating process of exposure and acceptance” (p. 343). What has been learned from this experiment is that establishing trust between two parties takes not only time but also the opportunity to interact or to be engaged in a dialogue or communication.

It is truistic that restoring trust is not as easy as destroying it (Govier, 1998). What should be done or what approaches should be followed to restore or rebuild trust between two people or parties after there is a breach of trust or betrayal by one side or the other?

A number of ways have been recommended, but for now let us consider six approaches to restore trust, as suggested by Govier (1998). The first way is to appeal for trust, “trust me,” asking the other to believe in one’s “loyalty or dependability.” This is a plea rather than an order. However, the effect of this approach may be, at best, short term if nothing else is done to address the causes for distrust because this appeal is manipulative and “offers no reinterpretation of the past, no apology, and no specific reassurance regarding the future” (Govier, 1998, p. 165). The second approach is to talk things over or to discuss issues of trust directly. However, raising the issue of distrust openly and directly is less likely to work when the scope is broader and the context is not specific and keeps spreading from one to another. Its effectiveness depends, to a large extent, on the intimacy of the relationship as well as the specificity of the context of the issues of distrust (Govier, 1998). Another approach is active listening, which is more effective than just saying “trust me” because it requires the demonstration of the listener’s interest and genuine concern by paying close attention and showing understanding and empathy. As Govier (1998) explains, “[i]n cases of distrust or a conflict, active listening can help restore trust. It creates empathy and mutual understanding. Active listening is an indirect appeal for trust; we express in our behavior and speech a concern and respect for the other. We try hard to understand [one’s] feelings, beliefs, needs, and interests, and we show, through our words and attitude, that we are doing so” (pp. 169-170). The fourth approach is the notion of therapeutic trust, defined as conveying to an untrustworthy person our conviction that he or she is, or can become, “a person of integrity—to encourage him [or her] to merit the trust placed in him or [her]” (Govier, 1998, p. 171). This notion is extensively studied by H.J.N. Horsburgh (see Horsburgh, 1960) and applied by Gandhi during his movement for the independence of India from the British Empire. This approach is often effective because, based on Horsburgh’s conception of therapeutic trust borrowed from the psychological studies of self-fulfilling prophecies, “people are strongly influenced by the conception that other people have of them and are profoundly discouraged when others openly imply that they are untrustworthy” (p. 171) and “people treated as, and assumed to be, trustworthy will tend to become trustworthy” (p. 172). The fifth approach is consistent trustworthiness, meaning that in order to diminish distrust and restore trust we should unfailingly display our consistent and complete trustworthiness without having to fully trust. Although this approach is not a miracle, as Fisher and Brown explain, this consistent trustworthy behavior on our part may “inspire that sort of behavior in our partner,” because it is an anticipation of reciprocation, as with therapeutic trust (Govier, 1998, p. 177). And the final approach is self-reflection, which involves critical questioning and examination of our own beliefs, attitudes and reasons for distrust in a relationship. Self-reflection is an intellectual process which can provide a basis for understanding the whole picture or context of a flawed relationship and for restoring trust, if the crack or fracture in a relationship is not too severe to amend.

2.2.4. Interpersonal and institutional trust

How about trust in individuals and trust in institutions? Is there any relationship between these two kinds of trust? Do they both exist at the same time or does one exist without the presence of the other? A perfect scenario would be there existed interpersonal trust (trust in individuals) and generalized or abstract (Misztal, 1996) trust (trust rooted in institutions) at the same time. Nowadays, in most societies, the functioning of society depends on the rules and laws of the institutions, which binds individuals together and secures the stability of social relationships and order. So, it seems that the social system plays a key role in generating interpersonal trust and solidarity, although different systems generate different amount of trust (Misztal, 1996). For this reason, in order to constitute trust in individuals, there needs to be trust in social institutions (Misztal, 1996). However, Misztal (1996) argues that trust at the general institutional level is the by­product of trust and norm of reciprocity at the interpersonal level, and public institutions only play a key role in institutionalizing this trust and norm of civic mindedness into political institutions in order to form a basis for a well-ordered society. As Cook argued, public institutions are crucial in maintaining “order in society” and “relationships between individuals,” which encourages individuals to “learn to appreciate one another and to work together” (as cited in Misztal, 1996, p. 268). Therefore, it can be assumed that trust at the general institutional level is the result of trust and norm of reciprocity at the interpersonal level, and these public institutions play a role in strengthening this trust and norm. As Misztal (1996) put it, “[t]he existence of institutional mechanisms.. .is the basis of any policy of solidarity” (p. 226).

Govier (1998) argues that “[t]rust in individuals and trust in institutions often interact and go together” (p. 18). This seems to be true as far as the word “often” is concerned because in most situations, it does not usually seem to be true. As Misztal (1996) asserts, the relationship between these two kinds of trust is not clearly specified in the literature, although many writers from the eighteenth century until today assume that there is some form of interdependence between them (p. 199). However, as Havel argued, “[t]he state is not something unconnected to society” (as cited in Misztal, 1996, p. 269). This, to certain extent, implies that there is an interconnection between trust in individuals and trust in institutions, although there is no explicit evidence to prove this relationship.

2.2.5. Functions of trust

So, what are the important functions of trust? According to Sztompka (1999), trust has several important functions. First, trust fosters sociability and participation, and enlarges interpersonal networks and intimacy. Second, trust facilitates communication and overcomes what Allport called “the syndrome of pluralistic ignorance” (as cited in Sztompka, 1999, p. 105). Third, trust promotes tolerance, acceptance and recognition of cultural or political diversity, meaning that with trust inter-group hostility is minimized and differences acknowledged. Fourth, the culture of trust strengthens the sense of belonging of individuals to the community, which then promotes collective solidarity, cooperation, reciprocity and identity. And finally, the existence of the culture of trust leads to the increase in cooperation and the reduction in transaction costs.

2.3. Conflict and conflict transformation

2.3.1. Conflict

Conflict happens. It is normal and it is continuously present in human relationships. Change happens as well. Human community and relationships are not static but ever dynamic, adapting, changing (Lederach, 2003, p. 23).

Conflict is defined differently by different scholars. Defined in simple terms, conflict refers to “the divergence in the objectives, beliefs and values among individuals and groups of individuals, where the conflict in any particular situation is an expression of these underlying factors” (Grzybowski & Owen, 2001, p. 7). Focusing on the intrinsic aspect of social change, Ramsbotham, Woodhouse and Miall (2005) define conflict as “an expression of the heterogeneity of interests, values and beliefs that arise as new formations generated by social change come up against inherited constraints” (p. 13). Defined similarly although the emphasis is on the perception or belief of the conflict parties, “conflict means perceived divergence of interest, or a belief that the parties’ current aspirations cannot be achieved simultaneously ’ (Rubin, Pruitt & Kim, 1994, p. 5, original emphasis). However, this definition seems to stress the importance of the present rather than the future goal. Mitchell refers to conflict as “a relationship between two or more parties (individuals or groups) who have, or think they have, incompatible goals”

(as cited in Fisher et al., 2000, p. 4). This is a definition which tends to place the emphasis on the dynamics of relationship and the long-term goal. Moreover, conflict is also defined in relation to competition for power or resources in addition to the incompatibility of values, beliefs and goals. As defined by Boulding (1962), conflict is “a struggle over values and claims to scarce status, power and resources” (p. 5). In short, conflict is defined is various ways but the common focus is the divergence or perceived divergence of goals, beliefs, values, status, power or scarce resources.

2.3.2. Conflict transformation

The end of the Cold War did not usher in a more peaceful era to the world; instead the new phenomenon of postmodern wars has been witnessed in many parts of the world (Graf, Kramer & Nicolescou, 2006; Aiken, 2008). This is the form of intrastate conflict—usually grounded on the fault-lines of nationality, religion, or ethnicity—which has become a major threat to the security of civilians (Aiken, 2008). This new form of intrastate violent conflict, if compared to the classical modern war, has become much more complex and resistant to traditional ways of resolving armed conflicts (Graf, Kramer & Nicolescou, 2006). Therefore, a new, innovative and creative approach to resolving or transforming this kind of violent conflict is needed urgently because it is not static, but dynamic (Greer, Jehn, & Mannix, 2008). This new approach must address all the interdependent and multi-layered dimensions of the conflicts. The term conflict transformation has been regarded as the most appropriate concept to address this kind of conflict.

The term conflict transformation is a relatively new concept within the field of peace and conflict studies (Botes, 2003). One of the main proponents of conflict transformation is John Paul Lederach. As defined by Lederach (2003), “conflict transformation is to envision and respond to the ebb and flow of social conflict as life­giving opportunities for creating constructive change processes that reduce violence, increase justice in direct interaction and social structures, and respond to real-life problems in human relationships'’ (p. 14, original emphasis). From this perspective, conflict transformation not only responds to the current issues but also addresses the underlying causes of conflict to envision a desired future of justice by focusing on four levels of transformation: (a) personal, (b) relational, (c) cultural, and (d) structural (Lederach, 1997; Lederach, 2003; Botes, 2003; Schirch, 2004).

How is conflict resolution different from conflict transformation? Conflict resolution is a more widely known and accepted term in the field of peace and conflict studies, whereas conflict transformation is a rather new concept in this field. According to Lederach (2003), conflict resolution implies the idea of finding a solution to a problem or bringing to an end something that is not desired or favorable. Conflict transformation, on the other hand, is not just about ending something undesired; it is also about building something that we desire (Lederach, 2003). Conflict resolution is “content-centered,” whilst conflict transformation focuses not only on the “content” but also on the “context of relationship patterns” underlying the “web and system of relational patterns” (Lederach, 2003, p. 30). Conflict transformation focuses primarily on the people and their relationships with each other (Schrock-Shenk, 1999). It is both short- and long-term and emphasizes constructive change. In the short term, it is concerned with ending hostilities, whilst in the long term it “seeks to create the underlying conditions for sustainable peace, such as correcting power imbalances and depoliticizing social identities” (Lange, 2000, p. 139). In a way, conflict transformation is an extension of the concept of conflict resolution. Table 1 below illustrates the differences between conflict resolution and conflict transformation.

Table 1: Conflict Resolution versus Conflict Transformation

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Trust and Conflict Transformation - An Analysis of the Baku Bae Peace Movement in Indonesia
University for Peace
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trust, conflict, conflict transformation, peacebuilding, Baku Bae
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Vicheth Sen (Author), 2009, Trust and Conflict Transformation - An Analysis of the Baku Bae Peace Movement in Indonesia, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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