Conflict dynamics in Africa: Ways and means of prevention

kutsutilaisuus · SEMINAR · 31.05.2022 16:00 - 17:30


From the Sahel to the Horn of Africa and Southern Africa, armed conflicts continue to challenge the development and political stability of many African societies. While they may often receive little nuanced public attention in Europe and Finland, such conflicts are complex and shaped by a variety of local, regional, and international conflict management and prevention efforts. The Finnish Institute of International Affairs and the New Foreign Policy Society in Finland (NUPS) are delighted to invite you to a timely discussion on Conflict Dynamics in Africa: Ways and means of prevention. The seminar’s key presentation will be given by the President and CEO of the International Crisis Group (ICG), Dr Comfort Ero, who will share her reflections on the continent’s peace and conflict dynamics and the challenges and opportunities for conflict prevention. 



Opening words
Katja Creutz, Programme Director, FIIA

Comfort Ero, President & CEO, ICG

Liselott Lindström, Freelance Journalist, SVT
Katariina Mustasilta, Leading Researcher, FIIA

Pär Stenbäck, Director, the New Foreign Policy Society in Finland (NUPS)



Katja Creutz

Programme Director, FIIA

Katja Creutz is Programme Director of the Global Security research programme. Her main field of expertise is international law and especially issues of responsibility, human rights and global governance. Dr Creutz holds a Doctor of Laws degree and a Master of Laws programme degree from the University of Helsinki and a Master of Political Science from Åbo Akademi University. She has previously worked as Research Fellow at the Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights of the University of Helsinki. She is the author of the monograph "State Responsibility in the International Legal Order: A Critical Appraisal" (CUP, 2020).


DR Comfort Ero

President & CEO, ICG

Dr Comfort Ero was appointed the President and CEO of Crisis Group in December 2021. She joined the organisation as West Africa Project Director in 2001 and rose to become Africa Program Director and then, in January 2021, Interim Vice President. Dr Ero has spent her entire career working on or in conflict-affected countries. In between her two tenures at Crisis Group, she served as Deputy Africa Program Director for the International Centre for Transitional Justice (2008-2010) and, prior to this, as Political Affairs Officer and Policy Advisor to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General, UN Mission in Liberia (2004-2007). She has a PhD from the London School of Economics, University of London. Dr Ero is also the Chair of the Board of the Rift Valley Institute and sits on the editorial board of various journals, including International Peacekeeping.


Liselott Lindström

Freelance Journalist, SVT

Liselott Lindström is a freelance journalist for SVT (the Swedish public service television company) concerning Finland and the Baltic States. She has just returned from Kenya where she spent four years reporting on Africa to SVT and the Finnish Public Broadcasting Company, YLE. She has received several awards for her reporting. She has an MA in journalism and has specialized in conflict reporting.


Katariina Mustasilta

Leading Researcher, FIIA

Katariina Mustasilta is Leading Researcher at FIIA. She is part of the Institute’s European Union research programme and her research focuses on political violence and conflict trends and the EU’s conflict prevention and peacebuilding efforts, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa. Before joining FIIA, Dr Mustasilta worked at the EUISS, where she covered conflict research relevant to the EU’s integrated approach to conflicts and crises. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the Government Department at the University of Essex. Her PhD thesis focused on the role of traditional governance in sub-Saharan African countries’ internal conflicts.


Pär Stenbäck

Director, the New Foreign Policy Society in Finland (NUPS)

Pär Stenbäck is Director of the Nya Utrikespolitiska Samfundet i Finland (The New Society on Foreign Policy in Finland) and has previously been both Minister of Education and Foreign Affairs. He is a Founding Member of the International Crisis Group (ICG) and member of the board since 1995 and Senior Adviser since 2019. He has been Secretary General for the Red Cross in Finland, as well as for the International Federation of Red Cross from 1988 to 1992. He was General Secretary of the Nordic Council of Ministers right from 1992 to 1997. Since 2001 he had been the President of the European Cultural Parliament (ECP).