Johan Galtung (1987, Norway)
Johan Galtung

Johan Galtung (Norway)

Honorary Award

"... for his systematic and multidisciplinary study of the conditions which can lead to peace."

Johan Galtung was born to Norwegian parents in 1930. He has had an international academic career spanning 40 years, five continents, a dozen major positions and over 30 Visiting Professorships, 70 books and more than 1,000 published monographs.

Turning to the social sciences after initial research as a mathematician, Galtung published his influential Theory and Methods of Social Research (Allen & Unwin) in 1967. Eight years earlier he had set up the International Peace Research Institute in Oslo, the first institute of its kind to mark a mark in the academic world, and was its Director for 10 years. In Oslo, too, he founded the Journal of Peace Research at the University of Oslo from 1969-77, during which period he also helped to found the Inter-University Centre in Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia, as a meeting place for East and West, and was for four years its first Director General. Senior university positions followed in succeeding years, interspersed with consultancies to the whole range of UN agencies: UNESCO, UNCTAD, WHO, ILO, FAO, UNU, UNEP, UNIDO, UNDP, UNITAR and UNRISD. Some of the subjects in which he held a Visiting Professorship recently were international economics at Sichuan University, China, world politics of peace and war at Princeton University, USA, international studies at Duke University, USA, and peace studies at Chuo University, Japan. He has been Distinguished Professor of Peace Studies at the University of Hawaii, Universität Witten/Herdecke, Germany, and Universitetet i Tromsö, Norway.

Galtung has been focusing on four main areas of work:

  • Conflict and peace theory, and particularly on unresolved conflict as the basic underlying cause of violence, implying that conflict resolution by peaceful means is basic for peace;
  • comparative civilisation theory, exploring the underlying implications for peace and development of occidental and oriental civilisations; - the generation of textbooks in general peace theory and general conflict resolution;
  • development theory, including issues of ecology, health and peace; and
  • a new approach to economics which can more comfortably accommodate such major world goals as peace, development, human growth and ecological balance.

Galtung's publications reflect his position as one of the founders of peace research. They range from the early Gandhi's Political Ethics (Tanum, Oslo, 1955), through the six volumes of Essays in Peace Research (Ejlers, Copenhagen, 1974-88), True Worlds (Macmillan, New York, 1980), and There Are Alternatives (Spokesman, 1984) to Human Rights in Another Key (Polity, 1994), (with Daisaku Ikeda) Choose Peace (Pluto, 1995), and many other.

In addition, Galtung has been actively engaged as a conflict resolution facilitator, e.g. between North and South Korea and Israel/Palestine, in the Gulf region and former Yugoslavia.

In 1993, Johan Galtung founded TRANSCEND, a network for Peace and Development, which is now running Transcend Peace University with a number of courses online, Transcend University Press, Transcend Media Service with material on current events, and Transcend Research Insitute.

"Peace appeals to the hearts; studies to the brain. Both are needed, indeed indispensable. But equally indispensable is a valid link between brain and heart. And that, in a nutshell, is what peace studies and peace practice are all about."
Johan Galtung
Contact Details

51 Bois Chatton
F-01210 Versonnex

Website of TRANSCEND

Website of the Galtung Institut



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