As part of its mandate to bring support to the new peacebuilding architecture, the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform decided to hold a major event gathering representatives from New York and representatives from the field to discuss with the Geneva peacebuilding community specific issues related to international peacebuilding practices. The theme of the Forum in 2008 was “Evaluating Peacebuilding: Measuring Peace Consolidation in the UN Peacebuilding Commission Focus Countries”. The emeeting provided a closer look at Burundi, Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau and the Central African Republic, the objective being to see what the expectations were of these countries when the PBC initiated work with them, and what has happened over the last two years.
The meeting aimed to provide a substantive look at how the process of peacebuilding is to be evaluated, from the dimensions of institutional reform as well as that of social change. Furthermore, the meeting aimed to clarify what is actually envisioned when we talk of peace consolidation. In this way, the participants sought to move beyond the mechanisms and functions of the peacebuilding process, and to focus instead on the positive and negative experiences of building peace which emerge out of the case studies considered.Significantly, the Geneva Peacebuilding Platform Annual Forum provided the first opportunity for the representatives of the PBC focus countries to exchange their experiences in peacebuilding with the PBC.