Who we are
Conducive Space for Peace (CSP) is a non-governmental organisation founded in 2016 by Mie Roesdahl, guided by a strong board, and supported by a global network of like-minded change agents and private foundations such as Humanity United. With its global scope and outreach and its focus on local actors in conflict affected contexts, it is set up to contribute to transformation of the global peacebuilding system and a paradigm shift in global collaboration around peace and development. Conducive Space for Peace (CSP) consists of people who are driven by the strengths of local actors, the challenges we see, the need and potential for radical change, and the fact that few actors take on these challenges and pursue this change agenda.
Sweta Velpillay – Co-Director
Sweta Velpillay specialises in conflict sensitivity and peacebuilding with an emphasis on strategic programming and policy effectiveness. She supports organisations to improve their effectiveness in conflict contexts by conducting systems conflict analysis, designing coherent programmes, conducting applied research, mainstreaming conflict sensitivity and using collective action to achieve greater impact on country conflict systems. She has extensive experience in advising and accompanying programmes, portfolios and teams for peacebuilding relevance and coherence. Over the past 14 years Sweta has worked with a range of organisations including donors, UN agencies, local, regional and international NGOs in roles such as conflict advisor, programme manager, facilitator and trainer. Sweta is an advisory committee member of the Knowledge Platform on Security & Rule of Law.
Contact Sweta Velpillay: email@example.com
Mie Roesdahl – Founder & Co-Director
Strategy, Innovation and Finance
Mie Roesdahl has for the past 25 years worked as a peacebuilding and human rights practitioner in countries in Africa, Asia and Europe. As an entrepreneur, change agent, and leader in the field, Mie founded Conducive Space for Peace in 2016. Engaging with grass-root and international NGOs, policy-makers, bureaucrats, and other stakeholders, Mie works to transform the global peacebuilding system and shift power to locally-led peacebuilding. Mie Roesdahl has among other things served as Executive Director of Oxfam IBIS, department director and senior adviser at the Danish Institute for Human Rights, and director of a four-year research project on human rights and peacebuilding. She has also served as a Conflict Transformation and Human Rights Adviser for the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nepal where she worked with local and international partners on peacebuilding and human rights and served as adviser to the Office of the Prime Minister in Nepal.
Contact Mie Roesdahl: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jasper Peet-Martel – Strategic Engagement & Analysis Manager
Jasper Peet-Martel is a peacebuilding and conflict resolution practitioner with over six years of combined field and academic experience in Myanmar, West Africa and Europe. His work has focused on supporting civil society, non-state armed groups and government actors, in implementing conflict resolution and peacebuilding projects. As a Rotary Peace Fellow, he has supported dialogue projects at the European Institute of Peace and a USAID West Africa project focused on countering violent extremism in the Sahel. Prior to his Rotary Peace Fellowship, he worked for Nonviolent Peaceforce, providing technical assistance to civilian protection and ceasefire monitoring mechanisms in conflict affected regions of Myanmar. Jasper is a Rotary Peace Fellow and holds a Master’s in Social Science from the Department of Peace and Conflict Research at Uppsala University.
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Leah Roozendaal – Programme Officer
Leah Roozendaal is a conflict transformation and social cohesion practitioner with over five years of experience working in West Africa and South East Asia. Her work has focused on peace and reconciliation dialogues in Myanmar, ensuring meaningful and equitable participation of women and young people in peacebuilding programming and supporting community-based public health in Senegal. Leah also has experience integrating digital technologies and storytelling, such as animation films, into peacebuilding programming. Having worked with multi-donor trust funds, International Non-Governmental Organisations (INGOs), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and research institutes she has an in depth understanding of the international development system. Leah is committed to shifting power within the system, developing structures that lend themselves to equitable partnership and locally led initiatives and supporting local leaders. She holds an MSc in International Public Policy from University College London where she analysed the impacts of climate change on migratory patterns and instances of violent conflict in Niger and Mali and examined the efficacy of policy responses.
Contact Leah Roozendaal: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mathilde Wieland Thorsen – Project Assistant
Mathilde Wieland Thorsen is a recent MSc graduate in Global Studies and International Development from Roskilde University. In addition to her studies at RUC, she holds a minor in “Globalisation and Inequality” from Maastricht University. Throughout her academic career, Mathilde has critically explored the field of development to complement and provide nuance to sometimes simple analyses. For her master’s dissertation “Navigating Oppression: Land Right NGOs in an Enclosing Authoritarian Cambodia”, she analysed how a rising global, authoritarian wave severely restricts civil society actors working on highly sensitive issues, yet also how, through deliberate negotiation and re-strategising, some of them manage to carefully carve out a space for their activities. Mathilde has fieldwork experience from Nairobi, Kenya, and one year of practical experience for an INGO in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she worked on food security, subsistence farming, digital advocacy and rights issues.
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The Board is composed of persons with extensive experience, high integrity, and proven records of founding, leading and supporting new initiatives that address major societal challenges. The Board provides support and advice to Conducive Space for Peace, and is overall responsible for the strategy, management and finances of the organisation.
Theresia Kirkemann Boesen – Chair of the Board
Theresia Kirkemann Boesen joined Nordic Consulting Group (NCG) in 2015 and is currently working as human rights and governance consultant. Before joining NCG, she was for 16 years employed at the Danish Institute for Human Rights (DIHR), including as the director of the Department for Human Rights Education and National Human Rights Institutions covering both the national mandate on education of DIHR and international projects and programmes on human rights education (HRE). As part of her engagement with DIHR, Theresia Kirkemann Boesen has been living and working in Turkey and Malawi. Theresia has extensive experience in collaboration and capacity development with donor institutions, state institutions and local civil society organisations with a focus on human rights, democratisation, rule of law and development of organisational capacity and management.
Cedric de Coning
Cedric de Coning is a Senior Research Fellow in the Research Group on Peace, Conflict and Development at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) and he is also a Senior Advisor for ACCORD. He has 30 years of experience in research, policy advise, training and education in the areas of conflict resolution, peacekeeping, peacebuilding and peace and conflict studies. Cedric has a Ph.D. in Applied Ethics from the Department of Philosophy of the University of Stellenbosch, and a M.A. (cum laude) in Conflict Management and Peace Studies from the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
Anine Hagemann has broad experience working in peacebuilding in both policy and academia. She is currently on leave from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs to pursue a PhD at the Center for Resolution of International Conflicts (CRIC) at the University of Copenhagen, where she is involved in Nordic peace research and policy work as well as research on peacekeeping and Protection of Civilians. Prior to starting her PhD, Anine worked as a diplomat for the UN Department of Peacekeeping and the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in and on conflict-affected states and stabilisation and security policy. She was posted to Nepal from 2013 to 2015 and to South Sudan from 2015 to 2016. Anine has extensive experience with diplomatic negotiations and coordination among development partners and international agencies, funds and programs. She has experience managing large development portfolios, including dialogue with state institutions, other donors and recipients in the fields of peacebuilding, human rights, rule of law and good governance. Anine holds degrees in economics and political science.
Christian Have is creative director and owner of Have Communications. Since the mid-80th he has engaged in arts and communications related to music, literature, film, theatre and other cultural events, both in Denmark and beyond. Christian is a public speaker and advocate for the importance of arts and culture in national and global processes of growth and development, and he is ambassador for Danish People’s Aid and a member of Danish Red Cross group of business leaders, “Klub 10” as well as a number of boards of non-profit organisations. He has received a number of international communication prizes including the Sabre Awards 2006, Stevie Awards 2007 – 2008. Christian Have is Associate Professor in Communication at University of Aalborg and Associate Professor in Leadership, Organisation and Media Science at Copenhagen Business School. He has published several books including “Den nye Guldalder – kunsten som vækstmotor”, ”Synlighed er eksistens” and ”Drømmen om berømmelse”.
Bjørn Nygaard is coordinator of international projects at the Danish Centre for Conflict Resolution (DCCR) and manager of his own consultancy firm. He has 25 years experience working with NGOs, Danish MoF and the UN on three continents as advisor, manager and consultant. Most recently he has been working for the Ukrainian Red Cross creating conflict resolution capacity in the organisation. Bjørn is anthropologist from University of Aarhus. His focus areas are conflict transformation, cooperation across cultures (fusion approach) and Results Based Management. He has served both as board member (vice chair person) and manager of finance and international projects at DCCR. He is the author of “The Cultural Encounter at the Work-Place” and “Evaluation as a Management Tool” (both in Danish only)
Ola Saleh is a peacebuilding practitioner and mediation support advisor. She is committed to decolonising aid and knowledge in her various engagements. Since 2005, her professional background is rooted in feminist social movements from humanitarian and peacebuilding contexts in West Asia, Eastern Europe, and West Africa. Ola is a creative problem solver and systems thinker whose experience includes supporting women’s participation in political and peacebuilding processes (track i, ii and iii), policy advising, developing peacebuilding strategies, and conducting gender-sensitive conflict analysis as well as practice-informed research. Ola is a member of the Swedish women’s mediation network. She is a trustee of Saferworld and currently serves a second term as a member of the EU Radicalisation Awareness Network expert pool.
Founder and Co-Director
Theresia Kirkemann Boesen
Chair of the Board