Manuel Salamanca (Pontificia Universidad Javeriana)
One of the main challenges of Peace Research is precisely to carry research on peace more than on war and violence. Still, the study of armed conflicts and violence constitutes the core of the field. This implies that, in order to be, Peace Research has to focus on the production of an applied type of knowledge. Its results must not only be theoretical but mainly addressed to practice. Through presenting specific examples of peace and conflict research in the realm of social conflicts in Colombia it is possible to suggest forms of applied knowledge tending to peace construction in violent and conflict prone environments. This exercise will not address only the obvious armed confrontation in Colombia, but also environmental and non-armed situations that demand consensus and agreement building and agreement design. On the presumption of conflicts to be resolvable through pacific means, and violence to be avoidable, research must contribute to the practice of peace.