Third-party Interventions in Conflict Management & Negotiation

Rex C. Mitchell, Ph.D.

Read Lewicki ch.10, Wilmot &Hocker ch. 9. This is a focused summary from my reading of the material, plus some additional ideas and points.


* Ideally, parties in a negotiation can work directly, face-to-face, without the involvement of others. However, in many situations, this is problematic, unproductive, even impossible

* Then, involvement of third-parties can be helpful, even essential

* Continuum of involvement of third-party roles (categories):

* What kind of intervention is appropriate? ...Generally minimally intrusive intervention, "do no harm" (L.202)


* Adjudication (W.238)

* Arbitration (W.241, L.203):

* Mediation (W.242, L.204):

* Process consultation (L.208): this, mediation, and some informal interventions have many similarities in roles, process, and required skills

* Various informal interventions (W.256ff, L.210ff), including some with questionable value

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Last modified April 17, 2002 Copyright 1992-2002 Rex Mitchell