Trust building as a strategy to avoid unintended consequences of education. The case study of international summer camps designed to promote peace and intercultural dialogue among adolescents

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticle


This article aims to offer both a theoretical contribution and examples of practices of trust building in peace education; the article presents an empirical analysis of videotaped interactions in the context of peace education activities in international groups of adolescents. The analysis regards two international summer camps promoted by the School of Peace of Monte Sole, established in the Province of Bologna, Italy, in the place where in 1944 a Nazi assault killed almost 800 children, women and old people. Each camp lasted two weeks, and was attended by four delegations of 10 adolescents coming from different countries; the camps aimed to promote adolescents’ ability in conflict resolution, their interest in peaceful relationships and their respect for different perspectives, and reducing their prejudices and stereotypes. Our analysis highlights some ways in which facilitators’ actions create the conditions of adolescents’ trusting commitment in group activities. Through promotional and feedback questions, formulations and also linguistic help, facilitators can promote adolescents’ trusting commitment in peace education, supporting their agency and avoiding evaluations of their interpretations. Facilitators are able to build trust projecting affective expectations, which are expectations of adolescents’ self-expression as a result of the interaction.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1
Pages (from-to)81-100
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Peace Education
Issue number1
Early online date16 Sep 2013
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 16 Sep 2013



  • intercultural education
  • facilitation
  • trust
  • peace education
  • dialogue
  • post war

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