The term "peacebuilding" came into widespread use after 1992 when Boutros Boutros-Ghali, then United Nations Secretary-General, announced his Agenda for Peace. Initially, the UN's definition was limited to when a violent conflict subsides or stops altogether, occuring after peacemaking and peacekeeping. Activities were associated with capacity building, reconciliation, and societal transformation. Since then, peacebuilding has come to be understood and used as an umbrella concept reflecting a more comprehensive and long-term approach to peace and security including: early warning, conflict prevention, civilian and military peacekeeping, military intervention, humanitarian assistance, ceasefire agreements, the establishment of peace zones, reconciliation, reconstruction, institution building, and political as well as socio-economic transformation.
For Peacebuild, peacebuilding identifies and supports relationships, governance modes, structures and systems, and provides capacities and resources to strengthen and consolidate the prospects for internal peace in order to avoid a resort to, an intensification of, or a relapse into destructive conflict. Peacebuilding also seeks to mitigate sources of tension that increase the probability or intensity of armed violence. As such, it involves a range of approaches and transformative processes - for specific contexts or on a larger systemic level - that identify and address both the root causes and effects of violent conflict.