Eleni Christodoulou is an ESRC Doctoral Researcher at the Department of Political Science and International Studies, University of Birmingham, UK. Throughout her doctoral studies she has been a Universitas 21 PhD Fellow at the University of New South Wales, Australia, a PhD Visiting Researcher at the University of Tübingen, Germany, and has completed an ESRC-funded placement at the Scrutiny Unit of the House of Commons, UK. She holds a BA in Modern History (First Class), an MA in Political Science (Research Methods), and an MA in Diplomacy (Distinction) from the University of Birmingham. Her thesis, titled 'The Politics of Peace Education in Cyprus' investigates the discursive power struggle over education in the context of the Cyprus conflict. Her research interests include pedagogical peacebuilding; Gramsci and peace education; gender and peacebuilding; peace journalism; history and collective memory; the role of emotions in socio-economic crises; the impact of the financial crisis on national pride and identity (Greece and Cyprus).
An extract from the aforementioned thesis:
"The overarching rationale of this thesis is to deepen our understanding of- and resistance to- peace education in order to open up the possibility of peacebuilding through educational transformation. Educational change can only begin where clarity replaces ambiguity; knowledge replaces ignorance; critical thinking and self-reflection replaces passive reproduction; empathy and acknowledgement replaces fear and exclusion; and finally, human dignity replaces humiliation. Moving towards these goals requires deep and holistic change that is organically developed, carefully planned, and self-sustained. Failure to address local, grass-root concerns and behaviours has only led to inertia until now. Hence, this thesis has been an attempt to reduce the distance not only between negative and positive attitudes towards peace education within and between the Cypriot communities, but also to reduce the gap from peace education theory to peace education praxis. "