On 28 November, UNDP, UNICEF, IOM launched theUN Social Cohesion and Reconciliation Index for Eastern Ukraine (USE), which is available here: http://use.scoreforpeace.org
The USE is a sophisticated analytical tool that allows us to understand what is social cohesion. It provides both descriptive and predictive analysis that helps identify strategic entry points for policies and programs that contribute to strengthening social cohesion, particularly in conflict-affected communities. Social cohesion is a critical component of our work in eastern Ukraine, as it is the glue that holds together recovery, development and sustainable peace.
USE is based on the Social Cohesion and Reconciliation (SCORE) Index, originally developed in Cyprus by the Centre for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development (SeeD) and UNDP. It is both an analytical tool and a process. The process involves extensive consultations with representatives of national and oblast authorities, as well as civil society and community representatives. These consultations are crucial for developing a concept for social cohesion that is tailor-made for the context of eastern Ukraine, and also for translating the data (i.e., results of the analysis) into actions (i.e., policies and programs). The USE will be conducted on an annual basis, and subsequent waves will also allow us to conduct a comparative trend analysis – we will not only be able to track the changes, but also to understand the reasons behind the changes. Each USE ‘wave’ is based on a number of different data streams that, together, capture the views of over 10,000 people in eastern Ukraine.
The launch was well attended by representatives of the government and parliament, from civil society, and from international organizations and donors. The rich discussions following the presentation showed a strong interest from all stakeholders in both the findings (analysis) and continuation of the USE process as a tool for tracking and understanding changes in the social cohesion dynamics. For further information, please visit http://www.use.scoreforpeace.org.