Rather than scapegoating politicians for not driving the peace process forward strongly enough, Glencree appreciates the difficulties faced by politicians in finding a political way out of conflict, negotiating an accord and leading their constituencies towards peace. For this reason Glencree engaged in activities which complemented the efforts of all political stake holders in the peace process:

Political Dialogue Workshops

From its commencement in 1994 until its end in 2014, all political parties from Ireland, North and South and the main parties from Britain participated in this programme. Over 50 weekend residential workshops were held. Nearly all the dialogue workshops were inclusive and multilateral, and attempted to bring all the parties in the conflict together over a period of time but not necessarily in each workshop. Occasionally bilateral workshops were offered when particular political relations need to be addressed. Three main ground rules were in operation:

  • Participants controlled the agenda
  • Glencree controlled the process
  • Participant’s provided feedback of new understandings and political analysis to their party without attributing specific remarks to individuals

Other activities in the political arena

From time to time Glencree facilitated meetings between politicians from different parties to discuss specific issues or provided support and encouragement to politicians in furthering issues related to peacebuilding.