This handbook on group decision-making for those wanting to operate in a consensus fashion stresses the advantages of informal, common sense approaches to working together. It describes how any group can put these approaches into practice, and relates numerous examples of situations in which such approaches have been applied.

Dealing with Deep Value Differences

Dealing with deep value differences

The topic and title of this chapter are “Dealing with Deep Value Differences.” Perhaps the subtitle should read, “Trying to Do Better Than Fighting or Running for the Hills,” for trying to resolve value-laden conflicts seems futile to many people. Our values, after all, appear to be intimately connected to who we are and aspects of the world we cherish, whether they involve the sacredness of land and water or the sanctity of life or private property. Values run deeper than interests. When we give up one interest—getting something done quickly, for example—we often try to make up for that by gaining on another interest—getting our results less expensively, perhaps. But when we give up something ...

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