This week, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) in Vienna are jointly launching the third edition of their Scholarship for Peace and Security. The Scholarship offers a training programme on conflict prevention and resolution through arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation, with a specific focus on OSCE-relevant instruments. The programme is receiving generous support from the Governments of Andorra, Finland, Germany, Ireland and Switzerland.
Youth and women are chronically underrepresented in the field of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation, but there is widely recognized potential for education to strengthen how these groups can contribute towards achieving sustainable peace. The Scholarship for Peace and Security aims to support and enable students and young professionals, in particular women, to make their contribution to peace and security.
Originally, the programme was scheduled to consist of an eight-week self-paced online introductory course followed in May by one week of in-depth, in-person learning in Vienna. To adapt to the unprecedented global challenge posed by COVID-19, the organizers have expanded the online training course to provide learning opportunities for 150 participants from the OSCE area and partnering countries, rather than the 100 initially planned. Of these 150 young participants, 50 will be invited to join the in-person course in Vienna at a later date.
During the course, the participating students and young professionals will learn about a wide range of topics, from weapons of mass destruction and illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons to gender aspects of conflict prevention and resolution. The participants will be able to exchange views, learn from each other´s experiences, and engage with experienced OSCE and UNODA professionals in an interactive online forum.
OSCE and UNODA look forward to engaging with these 150 inspiring young women and men in the coming weeks.