The Fundamental Attribution Error in Mediation

Have you ever had someone blame you for something when there was nothing you could have done to change the situation? For example, have you ever made a promise to someone (say, to be at a certain place at a certain time) had something come up, and then have them become offended – where they just “assumed” it was “your fault”? More likely than not, you know exactly what I’m talking about. This is the Fundamental Attribution Error (FAE) at work, and it pops up all the time. In fact, the FAE has huge implications for not only our everyday lives, but also for many sources of conflict between mediating parties.

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