Ivan Sascha Sheehan, University of Massachusetts Boston, Graduate Programs in Dispute Resolution
Join us for a discussion with Professor Ivan Sascha Sheehan on the intersection of the war on terror and the field of conflict management. He is the author of the recent book, When Terrorism and Counterterrorism Clash: The War on Terror and the Transformation of Terrorist Activity (Cambria Press, 2007)
Whether the field of dispute resolution and conflict management can or should play a role in confronting terrorist violence is a matter of considerable debate. While empirically both interstate violence and intrastate warfare are on the decline, another form of violent conflict – transnational terrorism – is on the rise. As current efforts to manage and contain this violence have fallen short, the intersection of terrorism and conflict resolution has gained prominent attention.
In recent years, both policymakers and scholars have begun to examine alternative approaches to counterterrorism that draw from a range of diverse disciplines including dispute resolution. It may well be that the field of dispute resolution is able to work across disciplines to address this increasingly pressing form of conflict with a range of tools in a holistic way. As the field of dispute resolution evolves, it must adapt the tools at its disposal to confront emerging, urgent, and complex forms of violence like terrorism.
The cross-disciplinary nature of our field requires that we help those with the appropriate knowledge – those tasked with the difficult job of confronting these threats – negotiate with one another, address the symptoms and causes of this form of violence, and work together to manage this type of conflict.
Professor Ivan Sascha Sheehan is a faculty member at the University of Massachusetts Boston Graduate Programs in Dispute Resolution and a visiting professor at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University. Professor Sheehan specializes in the conflict between global terrorism and counterterrorism and in international cultural and religious conflict resolution. His research, based on terrorism incident data, examines the impact of preemptive force on terrorist activity and the implications for U.S. foreign policy and international conflict management.
Bring your lunch. Drinks and dessert provided.