Neutrality in the 21st Century and Why It Remains Relevant

IPB Peace Education Webinar Series 1

5 February to 11 March 2024

In a time of global upheaval, with the resurgence of conflicts and a shifting geopolitical landscape, the concept of neutrality is once again at the forefront of international discourse. We are excited to present our webinar series titled Neutrality in the 21st Century and Why It Remains Relevant, which seeks to delve into the multifaceted and evolving nature of neutrality amidst contemporary challenges.

The war in Ukraine, the escalating tensions between Western nations and China, and the shifting stances of traditionally neutral countries like Ireland, Austria, and Finland, have reignited the debate on the role and relevance of neutrality today. From Costa Rica to Ghana, Mongolia, and the Vatican City, the concept of neutrality varies significantly, posing crucial questions about its definition, practice, and implications.

Our peace education webinar series aims to dissect these questions, offering a comprehensive exploration of neutrality from various perspectives:

  • What does neutrality really mean? 
  • What is the international legal perspective on neutrality?
  • In what forms is neutrality currently practiced and how has it been practiced in the past?
  • What are the geographical dimensions to neutrality? 
  • What are the current challenges to neutrality and why?
  • What is the role of civil society in the conversation on neutrality?
  • Is neutrality still relevant? Are there new ways to explore neutrality in the 21st century that differ from the past interpretations?

This webinar series is directed to a wide audience of peace activists, academics and students, civil society both in current and aspiring neutral countries, and anyone else interested in discussing the nuance of neutrality. Participants will receive a certificate upon completion of the course.

Session Module:

  1. Session 1: What is neutrality? (5.02)
  2. Session 2: Case studies on permanent neutrality – how do states practice neutrality and what are the threats? (12.02)
  3. Session 3: Case studies on permanent neutrality – how do states practice neutrality and what are the threats? (19.02)
  4. Session 4: What does it mean to be neutral in the 21st century (26.02)
  5. Session 5: The role of civil society in neutrality (4.03)
  6. Session 6: Weaving the past, present and future of permanent neutrality (11.03)


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Watch the full playlist in our IPB Youtube channel.

Want to learn more about Neutrality? Check out our reading materials for free. Happy reading!

This event is in-partnership with Asia Europe People’s Forum, Alliance for Peace, active Neutrality and Non-Violence, International Association Of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms Germany, Independent and Peaceful Australia Network, Kyoto University Neutrality Studies, Transnational Institute and Transform! Europe.

**Transform! Europe is partially financed through a subsidy from the European Parliament. The sole liability rests with the author and the European Parliament is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained in this publication.