The Fletcher Summer Institute for the Advanced Study of Nonviolent Conflict (FSI) is the only executive education program in the advanced, interdisciplinary study of nonviolent conflict, taught by leading scholars and practitioners of strategic nonviolent action and authorities from related fields.
Organized in conjunction with the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy of Tufts University, the oldest exclusively graduate school of international affairs in the United States, the program offers a certificate in the Advanced Study of Nonviolent Conflict that draws upon its multi-disciplinary approach to global affairs.
You can stay up to date with all the news on FSI 2014 on our Facebook page and Twitter feed. Download the FSI 2014 flyer To learn about past FSIs, you can watch presentations from FSI 2013, 2012, 2011 or 2010. If you have any questions, or would like to request a paper application, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to view an introductory video to the Fletcher Summer Institute.
When: June 14-21, 2014
Where: The Fletcher School, Tufts University, Boston, MA
Date: Saturday, June 14th, 2014
Time: 9:00pm – 10:30pm
Description: Rev. James Lawson was one of Dr. Martin Luther King’s key strategists during the U.S. Civil Rights Movement. Having traveled to India to learn about Gandhian nonviolence, upon returning to the United States Lawson would put what he learned into action throughout the American South, integrating mass-based, nonviolent direct action into some of the movement’s most successful campaigns – the lunch-counter sit-ins, the freedom rides, the sanitation worker’s strike, and many more. A gifted trainer of nonviolent action, a committed voice for social justice, and a distinguished scholar, James Lawson speaks about his experience during the Civil Rights Movement and the role of civil resistance and nonviolence in contemporary struggles for rights and justice. The keynote address is preceded by a segment from the film, A Force More Powerful.
Date: Sunday, June 15th, 2014
Time: 7:30pm – 9:30pm
Description: The modern practice of civil resistance sprang from new ideas about the underlying nature of political power that began to be framed about 170 years ago. As later developed and applied by Gandhi, and then adapted through use in scores of movements and campaigns for rights and justice in recent decades, strategic nonviolent action has exhibited a common dynamic, propelled historic changes, and helped impart political and social properties to the societies in which such movements operated.
The success of civil resistance in liberating oppressed people, when compared to violent insurgency or revolution, has been extraordinary – and is doubtless why it is now being increasingly censured by numerous authoritarian regimes and by ideologues that favor change led by vanguards. But today’s “people power” movements continue to evolve rapidly as a historically new force in human affairs, and they may augur significant change not only in the way in which power is developed but also in how the legitimacy and vibrancy of democracies can be regenerated.
Date: Monday, June 16th, 2014
Time: 4:30pm – 6:00pm
Description: This session will discuss how repression affects nonviolent campaigns, provide empirical evidence that nonviolent movements are often effective even against brutally oppressive opponents. Erica discusses how movements “manage” repression through the promotion of backfire, as well as the strategic options movements have in dealing with repression. She also provides evidence suggesting that nonviolent movements that adopt violence or develop armed wings are not usually advantaged relative to nonviolent movements. This is because using violence against the regime, even when provoked, can undermine the necessary public participation that nonviolent campaigns enjoy, and can also undermine the backfiring of regime repression.
Description: “We believe that intensifying peaceful civil disobedience is not only ethically justifiable but morally necessary” – Kumi Naidoo.
Dr. Naidoo will look at when and why direct action should be deployed as well as what justifies nonviolent direct action. Dr. Naidoo will draw on recent campaigns such as last year’s protest at an Arctic oil drilling rig, which saw activists arrested by Russian authorities and held for 100 days, as well as the anti-apartheid struggle he was part of in his home country, South Africa.
Hailing from South Africa, Kumi Naidoo has been the International Executive Director of Greenpeace since November 2009.
Watch the ceremony live-stream
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Dr. Naidoo will also be receiving a James Lawson Award for Achievement in the Practice of Nonviolent Conflict tomorrow afternoon
Description: In the 1960s, the Reverend James Lawson organized and led one of the most effective campaigns of nonviolent civil resistance in the 20th century: the Nashville lunch counter sit-ins for the US Civil Rights Movement. In the years that followed he was involved in strategic planning of numerous other major campaigns and actions and was called “the mind of the movement” by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The James Lawson Award for Achievement in the Practice of Nonviolent Conflict (or, for journalists and scholars, the “Reporting” or “Study” of Nonviolent Conflict), is presented annually by the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict at The Fletcher School at Tufts University during the Fletcher Summer Institute. It is awarded to practitioners, scholars and journalists whose work serves as a model for how nonviolent change can be developed, understood and explained.
This year, four distinguished people receive the James Lawson Award, in the presence of us all.
Watch the ceremony live-stream
View the press release