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The Business Case for Building Resilience and Pursuing Peace

Policy Memo
January 2019

The private sector can suffer staggering losses when conflicts arise, especially small and medium-sized enterprises. In 2017 alone, the global economy lost $14.8 trillion due to violence. While the business community has at times negated peace efforts, there is a strong rationale for engaging the private sector in violence prevention.

At the Stanley Foundation’s 59th annual Strategy for Peace Conference, October 17-19, 2018, participants in the roundtable, “The Business Case for Building Resilience and Pursuing Peace” agreed that private sector actors have a critical role in promoting stable, resilient societies. Participants explored the existing research and rationales that support private sector engagement, discussed the current frameworks for analysis, and brainstormed how to communicate the importance of peacebuilding to the private sector. The discussion was driven by two primary questions:

How does the peacebuilding community engage the private sector in this work?
Once the private sector is engaged, how can the peacebuilding community effectively guide their actions?

The roundtable reached consensus that the peacebuilding community should work with businesses at all levels and develop clear, concise messaging to draw the private sector to violence prevention efforts. A detailed policy dialogue brief on this topic is forthcoming.

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