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Meet Aldo Civico

Senator George Mitchell called Aldo Civico “one of the most innovative leaders in the conflict resolution field.” He is the founder and director of The International Institute for Peace at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey, where he is an assistant professor in anthropology. Over the last 20 years, Civico has served as a strategic adviser and conflict resolution facilitator to organizations and communities in Italy, Haiti, Mexico, and Colombia. At the end of the 1980s in Italy, he was one of the founders of a social movement raising awareness against kidnappings, which at the time were a severe plague in his country. He moved on to serve from 1991 to 1995 as a senior adviser to anti-mafia leader and Mayor of Palermo, Leoluca Orlando. In that capacity, he helped to design communication strategies to encourage civic engagement in the fight against systemic corruption and the Mafia.

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Recent Blog Posts

  • About History. About Our Times

    "History: our present. Lowered into it, we listen," writes the poet Tomas Transtromer. My good friend Laura Simms, a wonderful and transformative storyteller, sent me Transtromer's poem About History. It enchanted me and it put me in a state of trance. Though written in the 1960s, I believe, the ... READ MORE

    The GULD Conference in New York

    It doesn't happen every day to be on a panel and have Harry Belafonte sitting in the front row, listening to you. I had this honor last Thursday at the "Grow Up Locked Down" conference. An extraordinary and unique 3-day event organized by The Gathering for Justice and her visionary executive directo ... READ MORE

  • Child Soldiers: My Testimony in Congress

    Today, I had the great honor to testify before the Tom Lantos Commission of Human Rights at the U.S. Congress in Washington DC. The hearing was dedicated to child soldiers and I focused on child soldiers in Colombia. I shared some of the stories I heard from adolescents who had been combatants o ... READ MORE

    Going Back to Work…

    "How do you mentally prepare to go back to work?" a friend asked me early this morning. Today I return to Rutgers University in Newark after my sabbatical. I will step into the classroom and meet my new students. Today we kick off the fall semester, and for many of my students it will be the beg ... READ MORE

  • The Power of Mindful Listening

    I am often asked this question: how come that guerrilla fighters, paramilitary leaders and gang members sit down with you and confess to you?  More often than not, I respond with a smile and a gentle shrug of the shoulders, but over the past few weeks, as I was designing a new training in effect ... READ MORE

    A First Step to Resolve Conflict

    "How many of you love dealing with conflict?" I often ask when I do conflict resolution training. No hand goes up. "How many of you believe conflict sucks?" I ask. This time, everyone laughs and raises a hand. Whether we go through a relationship or marriage crisis, whether we face a conflict ... READ MORE

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