MII Annual Conference 2017 Keynote

Keynote Address - Friday 13th October, 2017

Conflict Engagement in a Polarized World

In our day-to-day professional lives, we are focused on how to help disputants find a constructive path through conflict.  But we are also part of a broader effort to change how we talk about the most difficult issues that divide our communities and our world. Bernie draws on his decades of work as a mediator and a lifelong commitment to social change to consider what we bring to the table at a time of deep division and polarization.  Bernie will discuss his experiences with the despair many in the US feel and reflect on what people need to talk across differences and how we can help them do this. 


BERNIE MAYER, PH.D. Professor of Conflict Resolution 

Bernie Mayer, Ph.D., is an icon in the world of conflict resolution. With over 35 years of experience in the field, he was a founding partner at CDR Associates, the internationally recognized mediation and conflict resolution organization, and originally trained as a psychotherapist. He has worked across the globe as a mediator, facilitator, teacher, trainer, dispute systems designer, and program administrator. A true scholar as well as leading practitioner in the field, Mayer is the author of many works, including the books Beyond Neutrality: Confronting the Crisis in Conflict Resolution, Staying with Conflict: A Strategic Approach to Ongoing Disputes, The Dynamics of Conflict Resolution: A Practitioner’s Guide, The Dynamics of Conflict: A Guide to Engagement and Intervention, 2nd Edition, and now his most recent work, The Conflict Paradox: Seven Dilemmas at the Core of Disputes. He was previously on the faculty of the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame, and has taught  at Southern Methodist University, the Queens Industrial Relations Centre, the University of Colorado, Antioch University, the Central European University (Budapest), University of Warsaw, and Colorado State University, among others. He earned his Ph.D. in Social Work with an emphasis on conflict resolution from the University of Denver.


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