ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK
----- Do you know what Peace is? Like many Australians who have grown up here, you may think of it simply as being an absence of war. Steve Killelea reframes and expands this to a far more nuanced concept - Positive Peace. This encompasses the complex set of conditions that, once the guns have fallen silent, enable the citizens of a nation to grow and prosper, without fear. He draws the analogy with personal health - a healthy person is more than simply being without disease.
But Steve didn't stop at definitions. He sought to measure it because without means of measurement, how can anyone assess meaningful change? Plus, he really wanted to answer a burning question - What is the planet's most peaceful nation? Enter the Institute of Economics and Peace.
In 2007, Steve established an organisation that would embark on this quest, corralling the data and statistics and developing their analysis. Their efforts produced the Global Peace Index which is now used by nations, NGOs and the World Economic Forum as part of the 'report card' indicators of national social and economic performance.
In this very accessible and personable telling of this mission, along with Steve's personal journey which gave rise to these insights, he has presented us with a wonderful overview into where all nations' leaders efforts should be focused for our continued existence on this planet. Craig Kirchner
While COVID-19 is reshaping our lives, this must-read book for 2021 provides some of the answers to our most pressing global challenges. Unless the world is basically peaceful, we will never get the trust, cooperation and inclusiveness to solve these issues, yet what creates peace is poorly understood.
Working on an aid program in one of the most violent places in the world, North East Kivu in the DR Congo, philanthropist and business leader Steve Killelea asked himself, 'What are the most peaceful nations?' Unable to find an answer, he created the world's leading measure of peace, the Global Peace Index, which receives over 16 billion media impressions annually and has become the definitive go to index for heads of state. Steve Killelea then went on to establish world-renowned think tank, the Institute for Economics and Peace. Today its work is used by organisations such as the World Bank, United Nations and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and taught in thousands of university courses around the world.
Peace in the Age of Chaos tells of Steve's personal journey to measure and understand peace. It explores the practical application of his work, which is gathering momentum at a rapid pace. In this time when we are faced with environmental, social and economic challenges, this book shows us a way forward where Positive Peace, described as creating the optimal environment for human potential to flourish, can lead to a paradigm shift in the ways societies can be managed, making them more resilient and better capable of adapting to their changing environments.