Working Papers and Occasional Papers

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Working Papers and Occasional Papers produced by the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution. Earlier imprints were published originally by the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution.


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Now showing 1 - 20 of 47
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    Ripe for Contribution? The Falkands-Malvinas War and the Utility of Problems-Solving Workshops
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2000-08) Mitchell, Christopher
    “This Working Paper is a model of using an in-depth, hands-on account of a specific case to explore and expand a body of theories and to test the efficacy of specific practices. Among the questions Mitchell considers are when is the timing appropriate for a problem solving approach and advances our understanding of when a conflict is ‘ripe’ for involvement, if not final resolution. In addition, the paper asks how we should regard the issue of ‘success.’ In particular, he analyzes how asymmetries shape the prospects for resolution along a number of different dimensions, including asymmetry of advantage, asymmetry of readiness, and asymmetry of representation and access. Mitchell argues persuasively that while the Falklands-Malvinas workshops did not produce a lasting solution, they may be regarded as a success in a number of other ways.”
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    Frames, Framing, and Reframing In, and Through The Mass Media: Reflection of Four Protracted Environmental Disputes in the Israeli Press
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2002-05) Vraneski, Ariella; Richter, Ravit
    “The mass media is part and parcel of modern life. In recent years environmental conflicts have increasingly become part of the public agenda, and they now gain vast media coverage. While all agree that fully functioning media sectors are essential for expanding and supporting democracy on global, national, and local levels alike, many claim that the media’s interference, by definition, escalates conflicts. Recent studies confirm that many roles can be attributed to media coverage, including some that lead conflicts toward constructive resolutions. The hypothesis of our research is that through frames, the media is both influenced by and influential with regard to the conflict’s dynamics. This paper presents parts of a research project, aimed at improving the understanding of the framing and re-framing processes of intractable environmental conflicts. It introduces a hybrid typology for analyzing the media framing and re-framing patterns, and discusses the frames used by the media while covering four Israeli case studies. The paper portrays existing patterns of mutual impact between environmental conflicts, their press coverage, and public decision making, and raises several queries related to interventions in the media’s framing processes.”
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    Conflicts in the Second World: A View on Track 2 Diplomacy
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2001-06) Riegg, Natalya Tovmasyan
    “Natalya Tovmasyan Riegg has been a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR) and a Research Fellow at the National Peace Foundation since 1999. This Working Paper reflects her thinking about the problems of creating a peaceful settlement to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict in her native Armenia. We at ICAR have benefited greatly from our association with her, and it is with great pleasure that we share her thoughts in this Working Paper.”
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    The Liberian Crisis: Lessons for Intra-State Conflict Management and Prevention in Africa
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2001-06) Oquaye, Mike
    “The topic of protracted conflict in Africa and what might be done about it has exercised some of the best minds in the field of conflict research for a number of decades, and has become an even more urgent problem with the upsurge of violence, civil wars, and collapsed states in the 1990s. The Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution is, therefore, particularly pleased to be able to publish Professor Mike Oquaye's analysis of and reflections on one all too typical case-that of Liberian its Working Paper series. Oquaye completed this work while he was a Visiting Scholar at the institute during the academic year 1997-98, and he has subsequently revised and updated the work after returning to his own University in Ghana.”
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    Postconflict Elections: War Termination, Democratization, and Demilitarizing Politics
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2002-02) Lyons, Terrence
    “Outcomes of transitional periods after peace agreements to halt civil wars are critical to sustaining peace and providing the basis for a long-term process of democratization. Understanding these transitional processes and designing policies to promote successful peace implementation are among the greatest challenges of the post–Cold War era. In a number of recent cases, including Angola (1992), Cambodia (1993), El Salvador (1994), Mozambique (1994), Bosnia-Herzegovina (1996), and Liberia (1997), elections have been designated in the peace accord as the mechanism for ending the transition. Such postconflict elections are designed to advance two distinct but interrelated goals – war termination and democratization. This essay will examine the comparative lessons of these recent postconflict elections and their relationship to the twin processes of conflict resolution and democratization. The election events themselves gain importance by their connection to these deeper and longer-term processes. While the dynamics of conflict resolution and political transition are distinct, postconflict elections are embedded in both. ‘Demilitarizing politics’ is a concept that captures elements of both components and emphasizes the importance of specific processes and policies that support the twin goals of war termination and democratization. Insights from theories and concepts developed by scholars of conflict resolution and in the literature on political transitions therefore help explain the dual nature of such elections and suggest what types of processes support the demilitarization of politics to advance the twin goals of peace and democracy. Conflict resolution concepts point to the importance of managing the inherent strategic and security dilemmas to encourage military leaders to stop the fighting and exchange their armed power for a chance at political power. The literature on political transitions helps us see how the legacies of the old order and the uncertainties inherent in competitive elections structure strategic choice. Both conflict resolution and democratization studies emphasize the role of institutions, suggesting that in postconflict transitions the role of interim government and the construction of democratic institutions such as political parties and effective electoral commissions will be critical to both the security and political agendas.”
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    Witnessing in Mediation: Toward an Aesthetic Ethics of Practice
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2004) Cobb, Sarah
    This paper attempts to provide a normative basis for mediation that will hopefully complicate our ethical understanding of this practice. Specifically, I will elaborate a critique of ‘recognition,’ following Oliver (2000), which will allow me to build on the ‘relational transformation’ ethic at the base of the transformative model of mediation, advanced by Bush and Folger. Drawing on Oliver, I will argue that recognition is a concept, anchored in the Enlightenment, that paradoxically reduces rather than enables us to be present to Others, by requiring their strangeness/difference in order to constitute ourselves as whole. In place of this concept, I will offer the process of ‘witnessing’ as a discursive process whereby we constitute the subjectivity of the other and ourselves in the process. Further, drawing on Foucault (1980) and Jabri (1998), I will argue that the ethics of witnessing is not pragmatic in nature, but rather aesthetic, for it is the aesthetic that allows for the creation of a normative model for assessing narrative practice. Finally, drawing on Appreciative Inquiry and the literature on circular questions, I will provide a description of this aesthetic ethics in terms of practice in discourse, suggesting that the mode of inquiry fostered by the mediator is ethical if/when it destabilizes existing narrative and opens up uncertainty, while, at the same time, inviting elaboration of reversals in narrative trajectories. Ultimately, my aim is to elaborate a normative theory for mediation that is anchored in the practice of witnessing and suggestive of an aesthetic of narrative. While this will not dispel the spectre of the critique that Fiss invoked, it may provide some incantations that can be used to shift the grounds on which the discussion takes place, contributing both to our collective reflection and to our ethics of practice.”
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    Globalization and Pressure to Conform: Contesting Labor Law Reform in Egypt
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2004-02) Paczynska, Agnieszka
    “The economic changes brought on by globalization imply a fundamental restructuring of the relationship between the state and society, a transformation that inherently generates conflicts. Everyone has been affected by these changes, but the costs and benefits of integration into the global economy have not been distributed evenly across all social groups. While some have benefited from the changes, others have found themselves struggling to cope in this new environment. Many students of globalization have noted that as economic integration has progressed, the power of capital vis-a.-vis the state as well as vis-a.-vis organized labor has grown. In particular, as capital has become more mobile and the competition to attract this increasingly mobile capital has increased, the set of policy choices available to national governments has shrunk. As national-level policies have become more capital-friendly, the position of trade unions has declined and workers have been caught in a relentless ‘race to the bottom’ -lower wages, lower social spending, and less worker-friendly labor market regulations. “
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    A "Community of Values" in the CSCE/OSCE?
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2001-06) Sandole, Dennis J. D.
    “Dr. Dennis Sandole has long been interested in questions of peace and security and has published a range of empirical and theoretically oriented studies on the subject. This current Working Paper represents a report on his most recent investigation into the role of international organizations in creating the structures for comprehensive common security. His focus here is on the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and its predecessor, the Conference for Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE). This Working Paper analyzes data collected through interviews with heads of delegation to the organization conducted in 1993, 1997, and 1999. These successive surveys allow Sandole to explore changes of attitudes in the context of the momentous events of the 1990s, most notably the NATO intervention in Bosnia (1995) and the more contentious intervention in Kosovo (1999). Details of the surveys are included in the appendix of this paper.”
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    An Intervenor's Role and Values: A Study of a Peace Committee Report in Grahamstown, South Africa
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2002-02) Midgley, J. R.
    “The extraordinary transition in South Africa has received well-deserved attention. Midgley tells a less well-known part of the story relating to the work by members of a collection of Peace Committees acting to manage and resolve community conflicts between the time of the September 1991 National Peace Accord and the 1994 elections to majority rule. He focuses on his experience with the Grahams town Peace Commission and a specific set of conflicts within the Rini Township between members of the community and between the community and the police. Midgley uses this story to explore a wide range of issues at the heart of conflict resolution practice, including mediators' roles and tensions between the roles of peacebuilder, activist, and peacemaker, ethical considerations, and the relationships among the Peace Committees and political actors. He provides an assessment of the work of the Peace Committees and both points to their significant accomplishments during a period of transition and their failure to transform themselves into an institutionalized part of the post-transition political order. Rob Midgley's insights will be valuable to everyone interested in the potential and the limits of building new structures of peace in a complex social and political environment. We thank him for his contribution.”
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    Finding Meaning in a Complex Environment Policy Dispute: Research into Worldviews in the Northern Forest Lands Council Dialogue, 1990-94
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 2000-05) Crocker, Jarle; Docherty, Jayne
    “Among the different types of social conflict that have been studied by social scientists, disputes over the environment have been recognized as uniquely rich avenues for intellectual - inquiry. Often occurring at the intersection of complex economic, social, legal, political, and ecological issues, environmental conflicts also evoke deeply held values that lie at the core of many individual and group identities. The nature of community, the definition of the good life, and the meaning of the relationship between humans and nature are only a few of the prominent questions commonly raised by these disputes, These deeply rooted philosophical issues are not easy to address under any circumstances. Since they clearly do not lend themselves to technical analysis or easy resolution, policy managers may not even acknowledge them, much less welcome their inclusion in public dialogue. Embedded in intense, high stakes policy conflicts, they are easily lost altogether.”
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    Conflict and Culture: A Literature Review and Bibliography, 1992-98 update
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1998-06) LeBaron, Michelle; Garon, Stephen
    “The 1992 publication, Conflict and Culture: A Literature Review and Bibliography by Michelle LeBaron begins with the premise that the goals of conflict resolution are complementary to those of multiculturalism. It further posits that conflict resolution is a tool to achieve multiculturalism, which is defined as valuing the existence, maintenance and extension of individual cultures. A true multicultural society, it claims, is one in which equal participation is unfettered by race, ethnicity, gender, or class. LeBaron further proposes that if conflict resolution is to fulfill its promise vis-a-vis multiculturalism and facilitate successful intergroup relations, the conflict resolution community must engage in critical self reflection and examine its theoretical underpinnings for cultural biases. In particular, it contends that any process for effective multicultural conflict resolution must address cultural diversity, culture-influenced perceptions, and the issue of power. In addition to making these claims, the literature review addresses several related themes. For example, it deals with the ubiquity of the mediation model and the numerous culture-bound assumptions which undergird it. Recognizing the rapid changes in ethnic diversity and the growth of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), it asserts the need for both formal and informal conflict resolution systems to respond to cultural concerns. It also explores some of the characteristics of effective service providers in cross-cultural settings, and raises the implications of multiculturalism for dispute resolution training.”
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    Researching Practitioner Skills in Conflict Resolution
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1996-08) Acland, Andrew
    “The purpose of this paper is to present some informal observations and reflections around the subject of micro decision-making using as a vehicle the blend of cognitive and behavioral psychology which goes under the forbidding name of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). Micro decision-making describes the minutiae of intervenes' behavior: of what intervenes actually do moment to moment. Under this broad umbrella can be clustered choice of language, of posture and movement, of analytical focus: how intervenes use - consciously or more often unconsciously - their faculties and their physiology. NLP, whose origins and approach is described later, is an appropriate vehicle for exploring the subject because it is based on close attention to human behavior and on the details of how people influence each other.”
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    International Accompaniment for the Protection of Human Rights: Scenarios, Objectives and Strategies
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1996-03) Mahoney, Liam; Eguren, Luis Enrique
    “The processes of nonviolent conflict management, resolution, and transformation work best where state systems are democratic and/or have high levels of political, economic, and social legitimacy. Where regimes are controlled by military and paramilitary groups, they tend to believe that it is more efficient to rule by terror rather than persuasion. In these circumstances the opportunities for ‘normal’ adversarial politics, played according to widely accepted rules of the game, are minimal. State-sponsored terror and political repression force individuals, interest groups, and political parties to either withdraw from the political system or to engage in violent or nonviolent resistance. As General Iberico Saint-Jean stated during the first Argentinean military junta: First we will kill all the subvenives, then we will kill their collaborators, then their sympathies, then those who remain indifferent, and finally we will kill the timid. In fact, the politics of terror works normally not by mass killing (although it has a sobering effect on political expression!) but through a process of killing and torturing a few, raising the political stakes to unacceptably high levels and thereby intimidating the majority. The problem facing those seeking alternatives to the politics of terror is how to generate safe political action spaces while minimizing the risk of arbitrary arrest, torture, disappearance, or death. The construction of such action spaces is a prerequisite to nonviolent problem solving.”
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    Conflict Resolution and Power Politics/ Global Conflict After the Cold War:Two Lectures
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1996-01) Rubenstein, Richard
    “The two public lectures contained in this working paper were presented by Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution faculty member Richard E. Rubenstein at the University of Malta. ‘Conflict Resolution and Political Power’ was presented in Valletta, Malta, on January 12, 1995, under the sponsorship of the International Foundation. ‘Global Conflict After the Cold War’ was given on November 30, 1994, at Sir Teri Zammit Hall, Msida, under the auspices of the University of Malta's Department of Sociology. Malta's continuing interests in international peacemaking and conflict resolution are well known throughout the world. Almost from the time it became independent, this former British colony saw itself as a force for peace in the Mediterranean region: a natural bridge between Europe and North Africa, the First World and the Third. Pursuing these interests, Maltese public officials and academics have played a leading role in negotiating international agreements on the Law of the Sea and on environmental security. They have reached out to the Islamic nations and to Israel and have convened important conferences on Mediterranean regional problems. In fall 1994, I was pleased to attend the annual meeting of the International Peace Research Association hosted in Valletta by the University of Malta's Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies.”
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    Microenterprise Development: A Tool for Addressing the Structural Conflict Between Rich and Poor
    (1994-07) Beinhart, Eric
    “Conflict resolution and micro enterprise development are both fledgling fields. This paper attempts to show the relevance of viewing micro enterprise development within an overarching analytical framework of structural conflict. Johan Galtung provides the foundation, and Hernando De Soto, Muhammad Yunus and Mary Clark add supporting beams to this analytical construct. The modernization, dependency, and world system theories of development are dismissed as inadequate frameworks for analyzing micro enterprise development.”
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    Cutting Losses: Reflections on Appropriate Timing
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1995-12) Mitchell, Christopher
    “The field of conflict resolution has reached a point in its evolution where hunches and intuitive guesses are being transformed into testable theoretical propositions. Nowhere is this more important than in the debate about when conflicts are ‘ripe for resolution.’ The conventional wisdom is that early intervention is preferable to late intervention since conflicts are more tractable when there is cognitive flexibility, when the structural conditions are conducive to settlement and the issues are clear and unclouded, and when the protagonists have not lapsed into a malignant spiral of violent hostility. If this wisdom is correct, and there is much evidence that it is so, then conflict revolutionaries should direct most attention to the prevention of violent conflicts. If conflict resolvers fail to prevent the occurrence of violence, however, the question of when it is timely and appropriate for third parties (or the antagonists themselves) to initiate peace processes remains. This is a vital issue, since premature or tardy interventions may impede rather than advance positive peace processes.”
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    Personal Change and Political Action: The Intersection of Conflict Resolution and Social Mobilization Movement in a Middle East Dialogue Group
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1992-12) Hubbard, Amy S.
    “This working paper is based on a six-year participant observation study of a U.S.-based grassroots dialogue group of Palestinians and Jews and other Americans. It compares the grassroots dialogue group experience in the United States to problem solving workshops between Israelis and Palestinians aimed at change on a diplomatic level. It describes and analyses the special challenges dialogue groups face in building a social movement based on mutual reconciliation between Palestinians and Jews in the United States. Finally, it suggests we look more closely at the interrelationship between conflict resolution and social movement mobilization in order to understand how community groups expand their power base. This project was supported by grants from the Syracuse University Senate Research Fund and the Syracuse University Roscoe Martin Fund. The author also thanks the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution for providing important office and technical support for the project.”
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    Conflict Resolution in the Post Cold War Era: Dealing with Ethnic Violence in the New Europe
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1992-10) Sandole, Dennis J. D.
    “This timely paper by Dr. Sandole is part of a continuing project at the Institute intendedto analyse and recommend remedies for the resurgence of overt and violent conflict in Eastern Europe. It takes the form of a consideration of the manner in which the ‘security problematic’ for Europe as a whole has changed as a result of the end of the confrontation there between the USSR and the USA, and how this has become a matter of coping with conflicts that are internal or transnational, arising from long suppressed ethnic rivalries. Such conflicts have not been wholly unknown in Western Europe since 1945 - Alto Adige, Catalonia, the Basque country, Northern Ireland - but since the ending of Soviet control in Eastern Europe and the development of the idea of a ‘common European home’ the world has become all too familiar with the management and mismanagement of conflicts between Croats and Serbs, Russians and Lithuanians, Czechs and Slovaks, Georgians and Ossetians. In these, and many more, ethnicity and the search for ethnic identity and security play major roles.”
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    The OAU and African Conflicts: Past Successes, Present Paralysis and Future Perspectives
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1992-05) Amoo, Samuel G.
    “This Working Paper is part of a project to develop approaches and processes for a more effective management of African conflicts by the Organization of African Unity. This project is supported by a grant from the United States Institute of Peace whose assistance is gratefully acknowledged. While much recent writing about conflict settlement and resolution at the international level tends to focus on processes of negotiation, mediation and some of the newer, ‘Track Two’ procedures, it is still the case that the primary responsibility for coping with such conflicts remains with the major global and regional political organizations - the United Nations and such bodies as the OAS, ASEAN and the Arab League.”
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    A Willingness to Talk
    (School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, 1990-10-29) Mitchell, Christopher
    “Moves intended to initiate de-escalation and begin a peace process are often difficult to make and even more difficult to identify unambiguously. Two examples from recent Anglo-Argentine relations provide a basis for investigating whether successful gestures of conciliation demonstrate any common qualities or occur only in highly propitious circumstances. A number of hypotheses are advanced concerning characteristics which enhance a gesture's credibility and chances of success. Although it is noted that even gestures attempting to signal a clear ‘willingness to talk’ with an adversary, which demonstrate these characteristics, can be missed entirely, misinterpreted, or ignored by a Target firmly committed to continuing the conflict by coercive means; the initiation of a successful process of conflict termination remains a highly uncertain procedure. “