Psychosocial Conflict Analysis
This seminar begins from the working assumption that conflict is always about people. Whatever its contextual causes or consequences, any conflict is driven, shaped and directed by psycho-social dimensions that risk escalating a dispute into a zone in which destructivity and inhumane behaviour run unchecked. Understanding these dimensions – recognising them and analysing their various workings in particular settings – constitutes the first step to working with conflict transformatively, enabling a shift from wielding weapons to using words and to validating the cultural resources and the needs, interests and values of people in the conflict setting. Any such transformation necessarily requires thoroughgoing prior analysis of the social conditions precipit the conflict – the role of structural violence, for example, of grievance, of disparities and relative deprivation, of interests, needs and values – to cite a few of the approaches to be explored. This seminar provides tools to analyse conflict and become alert to pitfalls as well as to realistic openings for intervention and transformation.
The teaching methodologies employed include short lectures, individual reflection and work in pairs and small groups. Using case studies from Nepal, Zimbabwe, Mali and Kurdistan, participants will experiment with the following conflict analysis tools:
Finally, the importance of Glasl’s conflict escalation, the Do No Harm and the Reflecting on Peace Practice models as well as Lederach’s notion of conflict transformation will be emphasized.
- Psychosocial dimension of conflict
- Pyramid of Actors and understanding relationships
- Identification of conflict drivers
- Analysis tools: Conflict tree, Conflict onion, Stakeholder mapping
- Force field analysis.
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