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Alliance for Peacebuilding, Re-Wiring the Brain for Peace Internships

afpeacebuilding Alliance for Peacebuilding

The Alliance for Peacebuilding (AfP) is a global network of more than 100 peacebuilding organizations, 1,000 professionals, and more than 15,000 individuals developing processes for change in the most complex conflict environments in the United States and around the world. AfP is a leader in developing and disseminating innovative approaches to peacebuilding. Since its conception of Rewiring the Brain for Peace, AfP has collaborated with organizations such as the El-Hibri Foundation and Beyond Conflict in order to further understanding of how neuroscience can inform the peacebuilding field about spiritual practices and cultural values.

How​ ​can​ ​the​ ​spiritual​ ​dimensions​ ​of​ ​human​ ​life​ ​help​ ​re-wire​ ​the​ ​brain​ ​for​ ​peace?

Neuroscience has made great strides in linking certain emotions with violence and mapping their footprints on the physical brain. However, the other side of the equation has been chronically overlooked – namely, how can individual practices reverse the changes to the brain caused by fear and violence? With Rewiring the Brain for Peace, we hypothesize that there exist antidotes to these​ ​brain-changes​ ​that​ ​harness​ ​the​ ​spiritual​ ​dimensions​ ​of​ ​everyday​ ​human​ ​lives. Building upon pioneering neuroscience research on how the brain processes fear and violence, and linking this research to our understanding of contemplative practices and the mind-body-spirit connection, Rewiring the Brain for Peace examines ​how spiritual rituals, experiences, and values present in different cultures around the world: (1) affect emotional and cognitive processes, (2) contribute to transforming behaviors, attitudes, and relationships, ​and (3) have the potential to​ ​facilitate​ ​peacebuilding​ ​processes​, from violence prevention to reconciliation.

An​ ​inter-disciplinary​ ​research-action​ ​agenda

The project consists of a transdisciplinary group of 40 top-level experts and practitioners from a range of disciplines: neuroscientists and neurobiologists, experimental psychologists, political scientists, sociologists, anthropologists, spiritual leaders, and peacebuilders. After an intensive brainstorming phase, the group has decided to pursue three initiatives: Research, Narrative and Mobilization, and Tools for Practice. Participants are now working on these initiatives.

 

AfP’s Re-wiring the Brain for Peace Project is seeking highly motivated students for two internship openings:

Please cite PCDNetwork as the source of the posting in your application.

 

Narrative and Mobilization Internship

This position is ideal for a highly motivated Masters or PhD student in communications, peace and conflict studies, or a related field. He/she will assist with the development of the Narrative and Mobilization Initiative, as well as the development of our multimedia platform. The aim is to inspire individuals to take an inward journey toward nonviolence and generate a contemplative peace movement that is grounded in neurological research. The multimedia platform will serve to disseminate content that supports our mobilization efforts and give access to tools for practice that are currently under development. The candidate must gain familiarity with literature on neuroscience and spirituality, and must have technological literacy.

To read the full position and how to apply, please visit the full announcement here.

 

Neuroscience and Psychology

This position is ideal for a highly motivated Masters or PhD student in neuroscience, psychology, or a related field. He/she will assist with the Research Initiative, with the aim of supporting the development of scientific research and production of knowledge about how spiritual experiences, rituals and values can help rewire the brain for peace. The interdisciplinary working group is currently developing research projects around three thematics:

1) Core values

2) The role of empathy and compassion under high stress

3) Ritualized experiences and ingroup-outgroup dynamics

To read the full position and how to apply, please visit the full announcement here.

 

Qualifications

1. Currently-enrolled Master’s or Ph.D student in neuroscience, psychology, or a related field

2. Prior research experience with excellent methodological skills

3. Exceptional writing and editing skills with a strong attention to detail

4. Ability to work on projects with little supervision

5. Familiarity with or interest in peacebuilding and contemplative studies

6. Language skills a plus (Spanish, French or Arabic) Application​ ​Process

 

Both positions are part-time, unpaid internships. A minimum of 16 hours/week is required. The candidate can work at distance, maintaining close contact with the project directors, who are based in Washington, D.C. The internship will begin in January 2018, or as soon as a well-qualified person is identified. AfP is willing to work with the successful candidate’s higher education institution for course credit, if applicable.

 

Application Instructions 

Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample, and three references to: Kayla Tyler, kayla@allianceforpeacebuilding.org Files should be labeled “Last, First – Document Type” (e.g. “Twain, Mark—Resume”). Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis, and the position will be filled as soon as a well-qualified person is identified.

 

The Alliance for Peacebuilding is an equal opportunity employer and welcomes resumes from all qualified applicants, particularly women and minorities. AfP does not discriminate on the basis of gender identity, ethnicity, race, or persons with disabilities. Applicant must be an enrolled student for the duration of the internship,​ ​preferably​ ​based​ ​in​ ​Washington,​ ​D.C.

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