Human-Centred Education

Human-centred education aims at the development of the whole person and enabling the expression of full human potential through educational processes and practices. It employs a holistic approach to curriculum and assessment based on human relations between teachers, students, parents and other members of the community, and is achieved through addressing the unity of human experience as a whole, within a stimulating human environment in the school classroom, playground, community and beyond.

Educational dialogues and conferences. They aim to produce insights about how to fulfill human qualities and potential through education. These events are mainly for educators, academics, teachers, and young people.

The Lewes New School. The project aims to develop whole persons, who can grow up to be valued and contributing members of their communities. It looks to discover what is unique about every child, and to support that uniqueness by creating a range of teaching and learning opportunities that naturally accommodate the different styles of learning.

Teachers Education Programme. It aims to support teachers’ personal and professional development as well as enable them to implement a human-centred vision for education in their schools.

Website: Human-Centred Education

Spirit of Humanity Forum

The Spirit of Humanity Forum is a global network of organizations, communities and individuals committed to help bring about change in governance and decision-making, based on core human values. The Forum creates a safe space for deeper encounter, exploration and dialogue among leaders to discover new ways to move forwards.
The SoH Forum brings together leaders and practitioners who hold the view that the positive energy of love is the deepest, most enduring and most valuable characteristic of human nature. The aim of the Forum is to identify and share ways of improving access to this inner strength of being. It showcases practical examples of how love, compassion and a care for others can transform and truly re-humanise an organization.

website: Spirit of Humanity Forum

International Dialogue Series on Peace and Peacefulness

By way of active preparation for Spirit of Humanity Forum 2017, the Guerrand-Hermès Foundation for Peace (GHFP) and the Fetzer Institute took part in a three-part dialogue series in order to explore the nature of peace and how to apply this understanding in the process of creating a global culture of peacefulness.

The first dialogue was hosted by the GHFP in December in East Sussex, England. This dialogue was specifically concerned with building structural peace and took our innate peacefulness as a given. Therefore the focus was on the structures, systems and institutional cultures required to bring about a common political vision of peace as well as on identifying particular practices of peace and peacefulness which could lead to the transformation of individuals and communities internationally and globally.

The second dialogue, which is to be hosted by the Fetzer Institute in June 2016 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA, will explore the nature of peacefulness from its spiritual dimension and consider the realities within a given local context, such as communities, that might support the practice of peacefulness. A distinct theme is transformation through a spiritual pathway and how it might inspire us to live our lives from the inside out in more peaceful ways and towards a global transition from separation and fear to interconnection, oneness and love.

The third dialogue took place in October 2016 in Reykjavik as part of the preparation for the Spirit of Humanity Forum 2017 and the celebration of 30th anniversary of Reagan and Gorbachev meeting in Reykjavik. It will seek to investigate into governance features and international policies of a peaceful state. Iceland is an ideal location for this dialogue as it has been consistently rated as one of the most peaceful countries in the world. Important questions, such as ‘Why is there peace?’ and ‘What might we do together to make our society more peaceful?’ will to be posed in this dialogue to understand political processes, including the responsibilities of individuals, institutions and communities, that contribute to the collective intention of peace.

For each dialogue event, we ask contributors to prepare in advance a written outline of their thoughts concerning the posed questions, to be shared with the other participants. The underlying intention is that through articulating one’s ideas and responses to the questions, the dialogue has already started before the face-to-face encounter. During the actual dialogue meetings, there will be a mix of individual presentations with focused conversations, and in-depth group reflection in a contemplative space with encounters through mindful listening. By doing so, we hope that the dialogue will help deepen more holistic understandings of peace and its implications of such understandings for individuals, for societies and for the world.

The findings and contributions of these three dialogues are brought to the Spirit of Humanity Forum in 2017 to share this learning with a larger international audience.

The insights from each dialogue and learning from the Spirit of Humanity Forum 2017 will be disseminated more widely in different forms of report in 2016/7, including volumes of edited books to be published by mainstream publishers.

To learn more about the Fetzer Institute, please visit:

Healing the Wounds of History

Healing the Wounds of History recognizes the importance of psycho-social approaches to healing through self-awareness, understanding, forgiveness and transformation and integrates these well-researched methodologies in training of professionals, teacher education as well as conferences and other events.

Healing the Wounds of History programmes are essentially different experiential journeys through which people become more aware that unresolved past wounds can continue to drive us to violence. These are often well-established but innovative approaches to healing, including the use of drama, storytelling, constellation work, deep spiritual reflection, expressive arts and so forth.

The HWH programme has been developed to help heal the deeper roots of violence. The causes of violence are often located in recent but also older and even ancient historical grievances, memories and traumas. These psychological roots, when drawing on perceived injustices, can become sources of violence, especially in acute times of crisis, fear and threat. These driving forces usually remain un-examined. By unfolding and deconstructing them, individuals can begin to understand where many prejudices and impulses for violence against the other are held and thereby take the opportunity to release them through forgiveness and compassion.

The HWH training is concerned with unearthing these deeply rooted identities so that we can begin to reframe/rethink the “self”, humanise the other and improve relationships. To develop capacities at the individual level, helps collective action and peace‐building efforts at the group level. This important work then actively supports political, social, economic, and civil endeavours.



The InterFaith.Directory presents a great start point to research and understand more on interfaith – interreligious dialogue and action.
search Interfaith Organizations identifying with these frequently used WORDS.

enviroment | dialogue | health | women | grassroots | peace | conflict | tolerance | community | education | culture | justice/community | action | ecumenic | respect | local-respect | research | youth | spiritual | justice

Website: InterFaith.Directory

featuring an embed-enabled interactive cartographic geographic distribution of 91 larger and medium scale interfaith and inter-religious organizations.

Museum of World Religions Project, Birmingham, UK proposes a world-class institution, along the lines of the great museums of the world.

The Museum is intended to be a shared space for dialogue and understanding between people from different faith communities as well as for people of no religious or faith affiliations. It will serve as an educational resource for learners of all ages, and provide an opportunity for individuals to explore the part that religion plays in contemporary life.

URL: Museum of World Religions



Livelihood, Flourishing, Governance

Human-centred development may be provisionally defined as the development of communities placing emphasis on the principle value of human-beings as human by nature not to be instrumentalized in economic processes. This is uniquely compatible with human respect the environment and living according to ecological values.

Economic growth can mean dehumanization of civic society and of personal relations and lead to unwelcome effects on our planet. The current movement in the European Community to frame social policies in terms of their impact on human happiness and well-being is a recognition of the need for new ways of thinking in this area. Policy-makers are looking for a new paradigm. At the same time, many people are now questioning the fairness and effectiveness of the global economic system.

Our aim is to find a deeper understanding of human-centred development that is based on human values and which places economic growth within the context of human development as well as ecological values. We propose to answer the question ‘What does ‘development as if people mattered’ mean?’ in a systematic manner. We also aim to look at its implications for governance.

The objective of the Conference on Sustainability, Governance, and Human-Centred Development was to delve fairly deeply into the various factors that have been influencing and shaping development in general, and more specifically in Central Kalimantan, and to determine what can be done to change the prevailing paradigm of economic development to one with more of a human focus.

Collaboration with Yayasan Tambuhak Sinta and other organizations in co-convening this two-day event. The objective of the conference was to explore and imagine ‘development as if humans matter’ and see an alternative development path for the province of Central Kalimantan. We envisage a path to human dignity and livelihood is one that is based on human values rather than one that is focused solely on economic or material values. The event engaged a futures thinking expert, Hardin Tibbs, who has helped take the participants through this process of shared investigation, dialogue and discovery.

Participants of the event included representatives from a cross-section of society – government, civil society, business, academia and the donor community. The conference has been successful in achieving a shared vision for how to move forward on a development path that is largely based on human values, one that truly is sustainable and equitable for the people of Central Kalimantan. This new pathway promises hope for humanity in a world that is about to reach the tipping point in human’s relationship with the planet earth.

Indeed, case studies from Indonesia presented at the conference have demonstrated that real change can be achieved which ultimately enable people to live a more meaningful and productive life.

URL: Conference Summary

Peace Research

For nearly two decades, the GHFP has been exploring key concepts related to peace and peace-building in both post-conflict and divided societies and societies in general.

Peace is a formative process for our thinking and applied peace research rather than a conceptual object with some fixable definition. The research team has continued to explore the notion of peace, striving to achieve greater understanding of this concept in a more holistic and integral way.

Peace dialogue and encounter working in contexts [research, schools, dialogue-events, conferences] regions [Europe, America, Asia] and countries [United Kingdom, Rwanda, Lebanon, Colombia].



Forgiveness, Reconciliation, Peace

Forgiveness is a key element in peacebuilding, particularly in post-conflict countries. Forgiveness is complex and can be perceived in many different ways.

Our colleague and board member Alexandra Asseily has made an important contribution to the understanding of the root causes of mass atrocities and the importance of forgiveness in breaking the cycle of violence. Alexandra’s work is based on her many years of reflection on the individual’s responsibility in the perpetuation of violence. This has led to a widely accepted account of the significance of ancestral influences and “embodied memory” across generations in the history of conflict and trauma, where individuals can become receivers of inherited patterns from conflict rooted before our time.

The Garden of Forgiveness. The garden in Beirut (Hadiqat As-Samah) is envisioned as a place of calm reflection, sheltered from the bustle of the city and expressing themes of understanding, forgiveness and unity. It is conceived around an understanding that forgiveness is an inner journey and allows those individuals to address their own cycle of fear and so create new momentum of reconciliation and transformation.

This short film of dedication and tree-planting  at the conclusion of Healing the Wounds of History Conference 2011 featuring Jean-Paul Samputu, from Rwanda.

Please refer to this page featuring a short film of conversations featuring Alexandra Asseily, Pastor James Wuye and Imam Muhammad Ashafa of Nigeria on the notion of forgiveness during their visit to the site designated for the Garden of Forgiveness in Beirut, Lebanon.

URL: Garden of Forgiveness

Five-Step Peace Process. It is to encourage peace, harmony and understanding between peoples regardless of our ethnic origin or religion. It is also to help us understand how our collective memories of the past influence our present identities and how we tell and live our lives.

URL: Five-step Peace-Process

Healing the Wounds of History Training Programmes. The programme aims to first build an awareness of these trans-generational transmissions of trauma, and then support individuals and groups in their journeys of healing and transformation.

URL: HWH Training

Charter for Forgiveness and Reconciliation. It is envisaged to be a peace process in itself and aims to promote fundamental values underpinning the notion forgiveness. The Charter will draw inspirations through stories and examples from a wide-range of sources, including sacred texts in different spiritual traditions, religious/spiritual communities, and the lives of outstanding individuals.

URL: Charter for Forgiveness

Ara Pacis Initiative. ‘Council for Dignity, Forgiveness, Justice and Reconciliation’. Its members are ‘witnesses’ themselves of suffering or tragedy yet choose the path of forgiveness.

Website: AraPacis