The African continent has enjoyed great progress over the last two decades, but it is also facing increasing development and security challenges in many regions. Weak governance, violent extremism and terrorism, climate change and economic austerity is proving a toxic mix for many African states. In his talk, Vasu Gounden will provide his outline for steps that need to be taken to counter these challenges by African states, and how this work can be supported by partners, multi-lateral organizations and civil society.

Vasu Gounden is the Founder and Executive Director at the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), and has three decades of experience as a mediator in the crises in e.g. Burundi, DRC, Madagascar and South Africa. In September 2005 Mr Gounden was the first member of an African NGO in the history of the United Nations Security Council to address the Council. He has numerous professional commitments including being chosen as one of the World Economic Forum Global Leaders of Tomorrow, and he is an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa. ACCORD is part of the Training for Peace programme, in partnership with NUPI and the Institute for Security Studies in South Africa, and supported by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.