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12.1: Introduction

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    Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means.

    —Ronald Reagan (1982)


    The information included in Chapter 11 represents a synthesis of theory and practical experience in the fields of dispute and conflict resolution, facilitation, interest-based negotiations, and collaborative problem solving. The information presented in this chapter draws on the experience of mediators from Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Justice Dispute Resolution Office; CDR Associates (Boulder, Colorado); the Oregon Mediation Association; the Justice Institute of British Columbia; Kilmann Diagnostics; and the Center for Congregational Health. The model of conflict resolution that we present has been used by informal and formal nurse leaders in many Saskatchewan health care environments. This chapter describes the model and helps the reader understand conflict and the five different approaches to managing conflict. Each approach is then applied to hypothetical nursing situations or environments, to help the reader see the practical use of the theory in nursing. A review of the evidence concludes the chapter.

    Note: Chapter 11 is contributed by Stacy Muller and Amanda Willcox of the Dispute Resolution Office, Ministry of Justice (Government of Saskatchewan).

    Learning Objectives

    1. Describe the different causes of conflict.
    2. Analyze the different approaches to managing conflict.
    3. Recognize how conflict escalates.
    4. Adapt your approach to conflict.
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