Bridging troubled waters: conflict resolution from the heart

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Jossey-Bass, 2002 - Business & Economics - 329 pages
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"Bridging Troubled Waters "marks a new wave in conflict resolution practice, centered in relationship and creativity. Developed by Michelle LeBaron from over two decades of teaching and practicing in organizations and institutions around the world, her approach infuses the science of conflict resolution practice with art and the techniques with humanity.

"Bridging Troubled Waters" is about a robust and holistic approach to resolving conflict. It begins where much of the currently accepted theory and practice in the field leaves off. Like a hand pulling back the curtain from parts of us that have been closeted away, this book reveals ways we can use more of ourselves in addressing conflict. Moving beyond the analytic and the intellectual, it situates our efforts at bridging conflict in the very places where conflict is born--relationships. From relationships come connection, meaning, and identity. It is through awareness of connection, shared meaning, and respect for identity that conflicts are transformed.

LeBaron reveals how mediators and facilitators can bridge conflict by tapping into their physical selves (from which change is enacted); their feeling selves (sources of empathy and genuineness); their dreaming selves (from which arise imagination and vision); and their spirit selves (from which meaning is made and deep connections are forged). This creative approach transforms conflict intervention into a way of drawing on human capacities to entertain ambiguity, cultivate openness to innovation, and engage creatively. " Bridging Troubled Waters" unlocks a treasure trove of new tools to enhance the repertoires of conflict resolvers, including stories, metaphors, and rituals.

Michelle LeBaron shows us that by embracing the art and science of conflict resolution, mediators and facilitators can become more intuitive, sensitive, and ultimately more courageous.

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A Creative Relational Approach
Enacting Change

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About the author (2002)

Michelle LeBaron is professor of conflict analysis and resolution at George Mason University in Virginia,. She teaches about conflict as it relates to culture, personal and organizational change, spirituality, and creativity. She consults and lectures in many countries around the world.

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