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Chris Spies

Independent Conflict Transformation and Dialogue Practitioner

Chris Spies is based in Stellenbosch, South Africa, where he works as an independent conflict transformation and dialogue practitioner in his own practice, Dynamic Stability.

He has gained extensive experience in mediation, dialogue, facilitation and training over many years in various international and UN settings. 

He is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation and facilitator of inter-generational dialogues. He founded and facilitates Unyoke Reflective Practice Retreats for Peacebuilders.

Chris currently works in partnership with Humanity Foundation on long-term accompaniment of young people in South Sudan.

He is one of the lead facilitators of courses in dialogue and mediation at the Folke Bernadotte Academy in Sweden and regularly facilitates workshops for various United Nations departments and other international organizations.

In South Africa Chris is an activist for justice with peace, which could be achieved if South Africa makes good on its AU commitment to establish a national infrastructure for peace.

He holds a Master’s Degree in Theology and attended Summer Peacebuilding Institutes at Eastern Mennonite University in 1997 and 2005. His full profile is available at http://www.linkedin.com/in/chrisspies. His Dialogue Ideas Facebook page has 1500 members from across the world and can be found at https://www.facebook.com/groups/447750585269309/

In the 1980s he worked as pastor, community development worker and anti-apartheid activist in depressed rural communities in South Africa. Chris was deeply involved in peacebuilding in South Africa in the 1990s, first as the Regional Organizer of the Western Cape Regional Peace Committee and later as a Senior Trainer and Researcher at the Cape Town-based Centre for Conflict Resolution.

He was the Peace and Development Advisor for the Social Cohesion Programme based at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Guyana, South America.

In 2013 he co-facilitated the “Finding Ways to Walk Together” dialogues in South Africa.

Chris is driven by the belief that people have the wisdom and can grow capacities to influence processes that affect their lives. These capacities grow in mutual learning spaces that are safe and respectful. It is possible to build those spaces with people rather than for them through engaging in relationships of trust, respect and support.