What Are Intractable Conflicts?

Intractability is a controversial concept, which means different things to different people. Some people on the initial BI project team intensely dislike the term, as they saw it as too negative: intractable conflicts are impossible to resolve, they say, so people think they are not worth dealing with.

Conflict Transformation: Unit 1: What is Conflict?

How do we face conflict? We can begin by understanding the anatomy of conflicts. In this lesson, students will learn to delve beneath a conflict’s episode to its roots, thereby understanding the layers of history, culture, interests, and values that push disputes into intractable conflicts with horrifying consequences.

Understanding Mediation’s Role in Preventative Diplomacy

Democratic states are often believed to be less likely to engage in conflict than non- democratic states. However, Bercovitch finds that once engaged in conflict, the political make-up of a state has little impact on that state’s likelihood of accepting mediation.

International Mediation and Intractable Conflict

Intractable conflicts have been with us for quite some time now. As these conflicts pose a serious threat to international peace and security, we may look at them and ask two basic questions; (1) how and why do they start, and (2) how best to end them? Here, I am concerned with the second issue. I

Mediation in International Conflict: An Overview of Theory, A Review of Practice

Studies of international mediation fall into four general approaches. Prescriptive studies offer advice to negotiators. Other studies seek to develop a comprehensive model of conflict resolution. Economists and game theorists seek mathematical models of rational negotiation behavior. 

Peacemaking in International Conflict: Methods and Techniques

This collection of essays offers a contemporary overview of approaches to international peacemaking. The end of the Cold War has changed the nature of international conflicts, creating new challenges for peacemaking. Initial essays explore this new context. Subsequent chapters describe different peacemaking techniques. 

International Mediation and Intractable Conflict: Conditions for Successful Mediation (Part 4)

Mediation is an effective and useful way of dealing with intractable conflicts. This is not to suggest that every intractable conflict can be mediated. Many conflicts are just too intense, the parties too entrenched and the behaviour just too violent for any mediator to achieve very much.

International Mediation and Intractable Conflict: Who are the Mediators? (Part 3)

Given the complexity of intractable conflicts, the level of violence associated with them, and the dangers they pose, it is remarkable that so many political actors are prepared to intervene in these conflicts to transform them, settle them, or simply to ensure they do not become even more dangerous. 

International Mediation and Intractable Conflict: What Mediation Is (Part 1)

Mediation is a process of conflict management, related to but distinct from the parties’ own negotiations, where those in conflict seek the assistance of, or accept an offer of help from, an outsider (whether an individual, an organization, a group, or a state) to change their perceptions or behavior, and to do so without resorting to physical force or invoking the authority of law.