Youth Leadership and the Future of Peace and Security

ARC DECRA funded project 2020-2023

I am currently an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow. My fellowship project Youth Leadership and the Future of Peace and Security explores the role of youth-led advocacy and leadership in the context of the establishment of an international ‘Youth, Peace and Security agenda’. It seeks to examine the role of youth in local, national and international contexts to contribute to more inclusive, durable peace. It aims to generate new insights into best practice for including youth in peace and security policies, and contribute to growing global recognition of youth peace advocacy by providing richer understandings of how to support and empower youth in conflict-affected contexts.

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If you are researching or working in this space, please feel free to get in touch. I’d love to hear about and connect with others working on the emergent YPS agenda.

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Work on youth, peace and security produced during the DECRA fellowship

I will provide updates on the research and outputs from the work as the project progresses.


Berents, H. 2022. ‘Power, Partnership, and Youth as Norm Entrepreneurs: Getting to UN Security Council Resolution 2250 on Youth, Peace, and Security‘, Global Studies Quarterly, online first. [Open-access]

Berents, H. and Mollica, C. 2022. ‘Reciprocal institutional visibility: Youth, peace and security and ‘inclusive’ agendas at the United Nations‘, Cooperation & Conflict, .

Altiok, Ali, Berents, Helen, Grizelj, Irena, & McEvoy-Levy, Siobhan (2020) Youth, Peace, and Security. In Hampson, Fen Osler, Özerdem, Alpaslan, & Kent, Jonathan (Eds.) Routledge Handbook of Peace, Security and Development. Routledge, Abingdon, Oxon, pp. 433-447.

Berents, Helen & Mollica, Caitlin (2020) Youth and peacebuilding. In Richmond, Oliver & Visoka, Gizem (Eds.) The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Peace and Conflict Studies. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.


Spalding S, Odgers-Jewell C, Payne H, Mollica C & Berents H. 2021. Making Noise and Getting Things Done: Youth Inclusion and Advocacy for Peace. Lessons from Afghanistan, South Sudan, and Myanmar. QUT Centre for Justice. December. [see Project Page for more details]

Berents, Helen & Saji Prelis (2020) More than a Milestone: The Road to UN Security Council Resolution 2250. Search for Common Ground.

Berents, Helen & Mollica, Caitlin (2020) Youth and Peace in the Indo-Pacific: Policy, Practice, Action: Report on the Academy of Social Science in Australia (ASSA) Workshop. QUT Centre for Justice.


2021. Youth and Women: Intersection of Identities in Peace and Security“. Invited speaker, ANU Gender Institute WPS Webinar Series. Online. 23 November.

2021. “Despite Conflict, COVID and Coups: Youth leadership and inclusive peace”. Invited Research Seminar. Griffith Asia Institute (GAI), Griffith University. 26 August.


2022. “Seeing ‘youth’ issues as shared issues”, with Ingrid Valladares. Australian Outlook. 1 June.

2022. “Young feminist leadership is the future of peacebuilding”, with Shadi Roushahbaz and Erika Yague. The Interpreter. 8 March.

2021. “Afghan Youth Fight for their Future“. with Savannah Spalding. Australian Outlook. 20 August.

2020. Roundtable “Futures for Youth Inclusive Peace in the Asia-Pacific”. Hosted by Centre 4 Justice, QUT. 25 November. Co-organised with Dr Caitlin Mollica. To mark the 5th Anniversary of the UN Security Council founding resolution, Resolution 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security. Video available here.

2020. “Solve generational problems by listening to the youth who’ll live them“. with Dr Caitlin Mollica. Lowy Institute, The Interpreter. 7 December

2020. “Thinking Intergenerationally: WPS and the Youth, Peace, and Security Agenda“. Global Observatory. International Peace Institute. 7 October. Part of the WPS@20 series.


QUT Law Media, 2020. “The World’s Youth: An untapped potential for peace and security” 11 February.

Back to ‘Research: Youth, Peace and Conflict‘ or ‘Research Overview

(last updated 19 July 2022)