Scoping Study – Research Gaps on Conflict

In 2014, the Partnership for Conflict, Crime and Security Research, through the ESRC, commissioned Professor Steve McCorriston of the University of Exeter to undertake a scoping study to identify gaps in existing research in the area of conflict. The scoping study is just one of a number of activities that will inform the development of the Partnership’s new conflict theme

Specifically, the aim of the study was to:

  • provide a summary of themes in recent research with a view to highlighting current insights;
  • identify current and emerging research gaps through internal and external academic networks;
  • engage with the stakeholder and practitioner communities to ascertain the impact of conflict research to date and to elicit their priorities with regard to future research priorities.

The study focuses on recent research from a variety of disciplines, including social sciences and arts and humanities, but also science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The scoping study was finalised in November 2014 and highlights six main research themes associated with conflict, including:

  • Understanding the shifting nature of conflict across time;
  • Interventions in conflict;
  • The media and representations of conflict;
  • Technology and conflict;
  • Conflict resolution and post-conflict transformations; and
  • Risk, insecurity and conflict.

The study also highlighted a number of recommendations relating to how research on conflict can be better supported, including:

  • Maximising the potential of cross-disciplinary research on conflict;
  • Expanding the toolkit with which conflict issues can be addressed;
  • Improving pathways to impact involving stakeholders from the outset and over the duration of the project rather than as end-users; and
  • Consider the scale of projects that can accommodate to maximum effect the cross-disciplinary approaches and stakeholder involvement.

Read the Scoping Study – Research Gaps on Conflict

Professor Steve McCorriston can be contacted via email at

Please note, the views expressed in the study do not necessarily reflect the view of the Partnership.