1. Update
  2. Peacebuilding

Blueprint on Preventing Violence for the Next President

By Julia Watson, Allyson Neville, Theo Sitther, June 23, 2016


We are excited to announce the convening of a high-level Experts Committee on Preventing Mass Violence to review current United States government prevention efforts. The final product will be a report with specific recommendations for the 45th President on advancing a comprehensive agenda to prevent mass violence.

FCNL staff review assumptions

FCNL's Allyson Neville and Theo Sitther review notes from an Experts Committee meeting.

The process entails a series of three half-day roundtables coupled with various follow-up consultations with current U.S. government officials. The final roundtable is being held today.

The Experts Committee is comprised of thirteen participants from across the political spectrum, including individuals with experience in atrocities prevention, countering violent extremism, humanitarian aid, peacebuilding, and national security. The Committee is being convened by the Prevention and Protection Working Group that FCNL coordinates.

Policies to better prevent atrocities have gained significant traction since theGenocide Prevention Task Force Report was released in December 2008. Many of the recommendations have been adopted, including the creation of the Atrocities Prevention Board, funding to better prevent and respond to violent conflict like the Complex Crises Fund, training for Foreign Service officers, and an increased focus on intelligence gathering related to atrocities.

However, despite this progress, there is a need to solidify the positive developments to date, address key gaps, and tackle new challenges that have emerged.

However, despite this progress, there is a need to solidify the positive developments to date, address key gaps, and tackle new challenges that have emerged. The final report of the Experts Committee will outline a strong vision of the value of prevention and chart a clear path forward.

The Experts Committee represents a continued and reinvigorated commitment to the prevention of mass violence as an achievable goal that the U.S. government must prioritize. We look forward to sharing the final report this fall, and working with our partners and advocates across the country to implement recommendations focused on better preventing mass violence around the world.

Julia Watson

  • Scoville Fellow, Peacebuilding Policy

Julia Watson serves as the Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellow in FCNL’s Peacebuilding Program. She works with Allyson Neville-Morgan and Theo Sitther to conduct research and provide policy analysis related to the prevention of violent conflict and protection of civilians.

Allyson Neville

  • Legislative Associate for the Prevention of Violent Conflict

Allyson Neville coordinates the Prevention and Protection Working Group (PPWG), a coalition of human rights, religious, humanitarian and peace organizations dedicated to the prevention of deadly conflict and protection of civilians. Since its creation in late 2008, PPWG has successfully advocated on these issues through outreach to Congress and various administrative agencies.

Theo Sitther

  • Legislative Secretary for Peacebuilding Policy

Theo Sitther directs the peacebuilding program at FCNL and oversees the work of the peacebuilding team. Theo lobbies to change and reform militarized counterterrorism policies with a particular focus on military assistance.