Conflict Fundamentals Seminar/Blog

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Conflict Fundamentals

As conflicts have been heating up and becoming both more destructive and intractable, many of our friends who are not in the conflict resolution field have been asking me "what can I do?" or "What can be done to defuse the deepening level of distrust, hostility, and even hate that we see growing daily in the United States and elsewhere around the world?"  We created the Conflict Fundamental seminar series -- along with the "What Everyone Can Do" Blog -- to try to help answer that question.  

These seminars go into more detail than the Blog, presenting the core knowledge from the conflict resolution and peacebuilding fields---knowledge that is, to a large extent, considered a "starting point" for our more advanced Conflict Frontiers Seminar Series.  These posts, which cover both "normal" conflicts and conflict resolution processes as well as complex intractable conflicts, are also likely to be of use and interest to students of conflict resolution and peacebuilding as well as a more general audience.

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Key to addressing the tough challenges posed by the
Hyper-Polarization Discussion
is the more widespread utilization of the fundamental insights of the conflict and peacebuilding fields.

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Syllabus Overview

As of March, 2019, the Fundamentals Seminar has been re-organized and expanded.  It now has twenty units, covering introductory concepts, and then a deeper examination of typical conflict problems and solutions, or at least ways of addressing such problems constructively if "solution" to too high a goal.  Posts in the first five units are mostly ones that were in the earlier seminar.  The units after that are new.  Right now they are primarily populated with BI Knowledge Base essays.  We will soon begin adding "Current Implications Sections" for these, which is what we had done previously when we included Knowledge Base materials in the Fundamentals Seminar.  But we decided linking to the original essays in the interim was still useful. Current Seminars include:

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Detailed Syllabus

See syllabi for the entire seminar series with a list and short descriptions of all posts including a collection of teaching materials and erercises.

Participation Options

There are four ways to participate in BI Seminars and Discussions. 

  • Visiting and Searching: Browse the BI homepage or particular seminar landing pages (particularly the right side) to see what's new (or what you may have missed), or use our search tool if you are looking for specific information. 
  • Subscribe to Our Free Substack Newsletter: You can sign up for Beyond Intractability's newsletter and get updates about everything that is new sent directly to your email.
  • Discuss: We are inviting anyone with thoughts on how to better meet the many challenges posed by hyper-polarization to contribute their ideas to the ongoing BI/CRQ discussion on the topic. The invitation to participate contains more details.
  • Contribute: We, of course, appreciate financial contributions which we are now collecting with a GoFundMe Page.  We also welcome suggestions about anything that might be done to strengthen Beyond Intractability, as well as information about things that you are doing that relate to BI.  (We add information about these activities to our Colleague Activities Blog.)

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