Site Accessibility Statement
Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of Arts
October 27, 2016
Canadian Excellence


Global Studies

Talk by Dr. Sara Koopman: Making Space for Peace

International Protective Accompaniment in Colombia and Beyond
Dr. Timothy Donais

published: 2013 | Presentation | GS Speaker Series

Global Studies Speaker Series for 2013-2014 Academic Year

The Department of Global Studies presents a lecture by

Dr. Sara Koopman

When: Friday, October 4, 2013
Time: 12:30-1:45 PM
Where: Arts 1E1

Making Space for Peace:
International Protective Accompaniment in Colombia and Beyond

International protective accompaniment is a strategy used in conflict zones which puts people who are less at risk literally next to people who are under threat because of their work for peace and justice. Thousands of human rights workers, grassroots organizations, and communities have been protected in this way since 1983. There are now international accompaniers working with 24 organizations in 11 countries. Colombia is the country with the largest number of international groups, with 12. This research is based on 15 months of ongoing conversations with accompaniers in Colombia about how accompaniment works, or to use Peace Brigades’ slogan, how it is that it ‘makes space for peace’ – and how it uses privilege to do so. The paradox of accompaniment is that it uses global systems that make some lives ‘count’ more, to build a world where everyone ‘counts’. The question is whether in doing so it reinforces or wears away systems of inequality.


Dr. Koopman is a feminist political geographer who does collaborative research with international solidarity movements to support their efforts to decolonize the relationships between global North and South. Her work also aims to speak to dynamics in humanitarianism, development, and peacebuilding more generally. She blogs at


Download: PDF (271k)    Dr_Sara_Koopman_20131004.pdf

revised Oct 1/13

View all Global Studies documents | View all Faculty of Arts documents