Mission, Vision & Educational Philosophy


The International Institute for Restorative Practices is dedicated to the advanced education of professionals at the graduate level and to the conduct of research that can develop the growing field of restorative practices, with the goal of positively influencing human behavior and strengthening civil society throughout the world.


Our world is changing at a breathtaking pace, driven by scientific and technological advances whose consequences challenge our ability to cope with them. Social patterns that have long characterized human life are changing dramatically around the globe, diminishing social connectedness in families, schools, workplaces and communities. The International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) will draw upon a wide range of fields to develop theory and practice and conduct research designed to address this global challenge.

The emerging field of restorative practices is the study of restoring and developing social capital, social discipline, emotional wellbeing and civic participation through participatory learning and decision-making. The further development of restorative practices as a field of study requires eclectic and interdisciplinary graduate-level study and research that includes practice, reflection, scientific inquiry and international academic collaboration.

Further, restorative practices can enhance our relationships and our emotional wellbeing. The IIRP Graduate School will model that potential by actualizing the principles of restorative practices in its daily operations, its dealings with students, staff, faculty, administration and trustees, and its relationships with other people and organizations.

Educational Philosophy

The IIRP Graduate School offers graduate degrees and professional development programming that will promote learning, personal growth and social responsibility among its students by integrating the core concepts of restorative practices in all teaching and learning activities.

We believe that every human being has intrinsic value, deserves to be treated with respect, is capable of changing and growing, and is inherently motivated to learn. We also believe that learning occurs best within a participatory learning community with students actively engaged in their own learning and interacting with their fellow students, and that learning should not only build capacity for the future, but should address current problems and challenges facing individuals and society.

Graduates will be thoughtful practitioners, able to advance in their profession and committed to developing their own capacities through habits of exploration and reflection. They will be effective communicators and will have a well-developed capacity to engage in life-long inquiry and learning. They will have an understanding of healthy interpersonal and organizational relationships and will work well with others in responding to new and unexpected challenges that arise in their organizations and communities.

Lastly, the IIRP Graduate School’s aim, as suggested by Albert Einstein in a speech in 1936, “is the training of independently acting and thinking individuals who, however, see in the service of the community their highest life problem.”