Producing and disseminating knowledge on nonviolent action
In the last century, campaigns of nonviolent resistance proved more than twice as effective as their violent counterparts. By enhancing civic participation, and thus separating regimes from their main sources or power, nonviolent social movements have yielded impressive results -- even in the contexts of Iran, the Palestinian Territories, the Philippines, and Burma. Historically, nonviolent resistance movements usher in more enduring, internally peaceful democracies that are less likely to regress into civil war.
To explore and elevate the strategy of nonviolent action at the international, state, sub-state, and local levels, the Nonviolent Social Movements Program at the Carr Center produces and disseminates knowledge on nonviolent action and how it can be promoted. Our collaborative research critically challenges the origins, dynamics, and outcomes of nonviolent action. While nonviolent forms of resistance have proven to be highly effective, alternatives have not yet been fully categorized and evaluated in similar metrics. Studies illustrating the distinct short- and long-term effects of nonviolent resistance compared with armed insurrection, for example, have only recently emerged. By systematically studying and amplifying nonviolent action, the program makes it more accessible to the public and practitioners.