Peacebuilding initiatives by corporate organizations:the case of Barclays Bank of Kenya
Onzere, Diana Ajema
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The environment that humans exist in is characterized by turbulence due to the existence of conflicts- both violent and non-violent. Those conflicts tend to affect stability, human productivity, maximum use of human potential and business performance all that are crucial for development. Entrepreneurs around the globe have the desire to grow and be successful. Unfortunately, this drive often hits a snag because violence, poverty and corruption are the biggest impediment to growth. It is this state of affairs that has led corporate organizations to explore how barriers of success can be reduces by being part of the solution. This is a case study about the peacebuilding initiatives that BBK had adopted as part of its core business through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) platform in the Rift Valley region after the 2007/2008 post-election violence and the implementation of policies that were aimed at maintaining peace and stability. The research design entailed the utilization of both qualitative and quantitative research technique for data collection to better understand how BBK had responded to violent conflict in the region. The design was appropriate as it provided insights into the research problem by describing the conflicts and response in detail. Secondary data was used and primary data was collected by conducting personal interviews of the BBK staff; both management and employees with the aid of an interview guide .The data collected was summarized according to the study theme being peacebuilding initiatives in corporate organizations. Qualitative data was then analyzed using content analysis method whereas the quantitative data was entered into an excel spreadsheet and inferential statistics employed for analysis via SPSS. The study established that Barclays Bank of Kenya Limited branches based in the Rift Valley region were caught up in the 2007/2008 post-election violence that were caused by issues such as ethnicity, ideological, differences, clamor for power, weak electoral systems, poverty and ignorance. Also the study revealed that the lack of active local engagement in the formulation and implementation of the peace building initiatives, lack of political goodwill, limited funds and poor control systems affected the success levels of the projects in the local community. From the study findings, BBK had responded to these challenges through getting into partnerships with local CBOs, NGOs, and government, boosting funds through shilling for shilling initiative, establishing a control system to gauge the outcomes of the initiatives, engaging the locals through carrying out research on their urgent needs to enhance relevance and appropriateness. In order for peace and stability to reign in the region, the researcher recommends the need for stronger partnerships with all the stakeholders in the region as well as with academia, religion and civil society to effectively tackle the rising need of security, social justice and equity. This study further gives limitations and suggestions for further research. One of the limitations identified by the researcher included weak control systems. A cross sectional study of corporate organizations in the region should is recommended in order to establish the existing conflicts as well as responses across the industry.
Africa Nazarene University
Barclays Bank of Kenya
Corporate social responsibility