If you’ve ever wondered how best to approach a conflict, Collaborative Approaches to Resolving Conflict will help you choose the right method for your problem. Using the same tool for different kinds of conflict often leaves us feeling stuck and frustrated. Authors Myra Warren Isenhart and Michael L. Spangle explain the major approaches to managing disputes at home, in the workplace or school, within communities, or in the international arena. The reader will find that each approach is illustrated with recent examples of what can go wrong and how to respond most appropriately.
Chapter 1: Theoretical Perspectives
The place we need really imaginative new ideas is in conflict theory. That's true with respect to war and peace, but also it's true domestically. The real weakness throughout the country is lack of conflict resolution methods other than litigation and guns. (Toffler, 1991, p. 13)
Conflict consumes an enormous amount of time, energy, and money in modern American life. Community Boards in New York City see more than 14,000 neighborhood disputes per year. Currently, there are more than 400 community justice centers and 100 victim-offender programs in the United States. The U.S. Postal Service reports 150,000 grievance proceedings and 69,000 disciplinary actions per year. During 1994, Americans filed 18 million cases in courts at a cost of $300 billion (Hoffman, 1996). Some ...