The Transnational Center for Sustainable Peace, or Sustainable Peace (PAZSOS, for its Spanish acronym), is a non-profit, non-governmental, independent, and multidisciplinary organisation based in Montreal, Canada, that works on issues related to peace and violence. We understand “Sustainable Peace” to be when individuals and sociopolitical actors willingly agree to renounce the use of force or the threat of the use of force, in order to reach particular goals or defend their interests. “Peace” is not only temporary decreases in insecurity rates but rather goes beyond implementing reforms to increase political inclusion. Cultural change that reaches everyone is fundamental. “Sustainable” is understood here in its simplest way: as the capacity to persist in time. PAZSOS aims to contribute to the establishment of a sustainable society where people are the first priority. This aspiration is in accordance with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development established by the United Nations (UN) in 2015.
PAZSOS is a Think Tank, an advocacy group, a professional association, and a specialized consultation group. We work for individual and collective empowerment regardless of one’s religion, ethnicity, gender identity, age, or place of residence, in order to reinforce each individual’s ability to act for a positive change in their immediate surroundings. We know that resistance to change is strong, but we believe that actions and transformations initiated at the micro level can be aggregated at a larger scale to increase the magnitude of social change. From a sociopolitical perspective, even if we accept that “from above” transformations are important, we argue that peacebuilding works better “from below”. In short, sustainable peace is rooted in microsocial change. Sociopolitical change is the result of collective action, which is shaped by social movements and social actors, which are ultimately composed by individuals. We believe we all can contribute to sustainable peace if we know how to use available resources. Therefore, PAZSOS works to achieve the following goals: