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Stages of Conflict

Stages of Conflict

What are the different stages of conflict?



Full Transcript

The first thing to say is that you have take a designer approach to conflict and to intervening in conflict. You can identify the stages of conflict which appear but you’ve got to start with the idea that every single instance of conflict is different from every other and that is because the people driving it are different. There is a real problem in this field with blanket rules, either of analysis or of intervention. Every conflict is a designer conflict.


For some people it might start with a tweet or conversation or something completely out of the blue. For others it will start much more slowly and it will build up over a period of time. It’s difficult to be hard and fast. You recognize it when you see it. The trick is actually for people to understand and almost to sharpen their intuition as to when things are not quite right rather as in a mediation. You get the feeling that you’re missing something.


It’s the same thing, it’s a sort of pricking on the back of the neck which you pay attention to, which tells you more about conflict than any kind of regular analysis of the stages it goes through. Always different, every single one.

About the mediator

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Andrew Acland specialises in designing and facilitating stakeholder dialogue and consultation processes in complex, multi-party, multi-issue contexts, often with environmental and social sustainability dimensions. Andrew began his working life as a political analyst specialising in East-West relations and arms control. In 1985, while working on the staff of the then Archbishop of Canterbury, he acted as assistant to the Archbishop’s envoy, T... View Mediator