When you download the New Conflict Management: Effective Conflict Resolution Strategies to Avoid Litigation you will learn how wise negotiators extract unexpected value using an indirect approach to conflict management.


conflict resolution theory

What is Conflict Resolution Theory?

Conflict resolution theory guides the informal or formal process that two or more parties use to find a peaceful solution to their dispute.

A number of common cognitive and emotional traps, many of them unconscious, can exacerbate conflict and contribute to the need to engage conflict resolution theory to come to an agreement. Both parties to a conflict typically think they’re right (and the other side is wrong) because they quite literally can’t get out of our own heads. Our sense of what would constitute a fair conflict resolution is biased by egocentrism, or the tendency to have difficulty seeing a situation from another person’s perspective. 

One approach to solving such an impasse that comes from conflict resolution theory is to set a productive tone by letting the party you’ve been arguing with speak first. When it’s time to air your own perspective on the conflict, claim the same ability to express your perspective without interruption. Focus on explaining how you view the situation, presenting hard evidence if necessary.

Another aspect of conflict resolution theory includes bringing in the outside assistance of a mediator. In mediation, disputants enlist a trained, neutral third party to help them come to a consensus. Rather than imposing a solution, a professional mediator encourages disputants to explore the interests underlying their positions. Working with parties both together and separately, mediators seek to help them discover a resolution that is sustainable, voluntary, and nonbinding.

In our FREE special report from the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School – The New Conflict Management: Effective Conflict Resolution Strategies to Avoid Litigation – renowned negotiation experts uncover unconventional approaches to conflict management that can turn adversaries into partners.

Featuring three case studies, this valuable report provides proven strategies for leveraging opportunity out of conflict, and tips for creating value and improving relationships, even with difficult people.

The following items are tagged conflict resolution theory:

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Training: Mediation Curriculum

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

In 2009, we collected many types of curriculum materials from teachers and trainers who attended the Mediation Pedagogy Conference. We received general materials about classes on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as well as highly specific and idiosyncratic units like Conflict Resolution through Literature: Romeo and Juliet and a negotiating training package for female managers … Read  

“Making Conflict Work”: A Book Talk with Dr. Peter Coleman

Posted by & filed under Daily, Events.

The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School is pleased to present: Making Conflict Work: Harnessing the Power of Disagreement with Dr. Peter Coleman  

Thursday, April 9 12:00 – 1:15 PM Hauser 102 Harvard Law School Campus Free and open to the public.   About the book: Work conflict is risky. It can go bad and poison employee health, work relationships and organizational climates, or … Read