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This book is about conflict resolution through mediation, from a psychological perspective. Although written in part from the point of view of litigation, the objective is to demonstrate how an appreciation of the psychological aspects of conflict and an understanding of the emotional strategies people adopt in dispute situations can assist both lawyers and non-lawyers in resolving conflicts.
The book consists of three sections- a theoretical analysis of conflict and conflict resolution; a practical, legal and experiential explanation of mediation; and thirdly a series of mock mediations, comprehensively analysed from the viewpoint of the mediator and the parties, providing tips and guidance on the dilemmas and pitfalls that mediators encounter.
The book is based on three fundamental tenets: that conflict is ever present, and cannot be eliminated but can be worked with; that the attitude and stance of the mediator towards the dispute can be of significance to the outcome; and above all that the use of psychotherapeutic tools can facilitate a paradigm shift in the parties’ approach to conflict. The authors demonstrate how the mediator can move parties in dispute from a position of intransigent adversity to a working alliance, and thereby achieve a 'good enough ' resolution.