What can we do to foster a more constructive approach for addressing difficult and intractable conflicts?

This is, in some sense, the topic of the entire BMI-MOOS, so we are kind of jumping the gun to ask it now.  But it goes hand-in-hand with the previous question.  If we do get people--either conflict scholars and practitioners or the general public --to take the conflict problem more seriously, what do they do next?  

  1. Adressing conflict professionals: How can we get our field to be taken more seriously and to really get a meaningful voice in policy processes and decisions?
  2. If we do get that "voice," what can we say that would be most effective?
  3. What are the channels through which we can gain the most attention and traction?
  4. How can we spread our conflict attitudes and knowledge more widely through the general population?
  5. What advice do we have for the general public that might really be taken seriously?  (We must do better than advise to "love thyne enemy" or the like because people simply don't.  Even the left--which generally preaches tolerance and acceptance -- of all the races, relgions, lifestyles, etc, isn't very tolerant of folks on the right--who don't accept the level of tolerance that the left believes is right. So we have to get more sophisticated than that--at least that's Guy and Heidi's assertion!) What's yours?

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Guy Burgess is a Founder and Co-Director of the University of Colorado Conflict Information Consortium. He holds a Ph.D. in Sociology and has been working in the conflict resolution field, as a scholar and a practitioner, since 1979. His primary interests involve the study and management of intractable conflicts, public policy dispute resolution, and the dissemination of conflict resolution knowledge over the Internet. He is one of the primary authors and creators of the Online Training Program on Intractable Conflicts, and is the Co-Director of CRInfo -- the Conflict Resolution Information Source. Dr. Burgess has edited and authored a number of books and articles, the most recent being The Encyclopedia of Conflict Resolution (with Heidi Burgess, ABC-Clio 1999). www.beyondintractability.org