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Conflict resolution

Cover of the Pt'chang Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacekeeping Trainers' Manual

Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacekeeping Trainers’ Manual

This handbook is a resource for trainers focused on community safety and peacekeeping. It includes training resources for practical ways to intervene in violence, to transform conflict and to build peace. Many parts of this manual may be translatable to other contexts.

Cover of the Pt'chang Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacebuilding Handbook

Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacebuilding Handbook

This handbook is a handy and unique resource for activists and community workers engaged in work for peace at a community level throughout Australia. It includes practical ways to intervene in violence, to transform conflict and to build peace.

Photograph of a neon question mark in a dark room.

Strategic Questioning Manual

Strategic questioning is the skill of asking the questions that will make a difference. It is a powerful tool for personal and social change which helps people discover their own strategies and ideas for change. Strategic questioning can be valuable in campaign strategy, group consultation processes, one-to-one organising conversations, coaching and many other contexts.

Photograph of a sandwich board on pavement, it reads 'Awesome' with an arrow pointing to the right, and 'Less Awesome' with an arrow pointing to the left.

Tips on how to give and receive feedback

Giving and receiving feedback is a core skill for people engaged in social change projects. These slides and related text outline what can maximise or minimise the effectiveness of feedback and useful phrases. 

Over a dozen hands reach into the middle of a circle, making the 'all in' symbol

Consensus Decision Making

Consensus is a nonviolent decision-making process that aims to create the best possible decision for the group. The input and ideas of all participants are gathered and synthesized to arrive at a final decision that is acceptable to all. Through consensus, we are not only working to achieve better solutions, but also to promote the growth of trust and respect within the group.

Photograph of a group of people having a meeting.

On Conflict and Consensus

Making collective decisions and navigating conflict and are core activist skills. Conflict is usually viewed as an impediment to reaching agreements and disruptive to peaceful relationships. However, it is the underlying thesis of Consensus that nonviolent conflict is necessary and desirable.

A stack of balancing rocks on a seashore

Principles of Co-operative Conflict Resolution

Navigating conflict is a core activist skill. These tips from peacebuilding have the potential to depolarise and de-escalate tense and challenging situations. This is an excerpt from the Nonviolent Community Safety and Peacebuilding Trainers’ Manual which is also available for download on the Commons.

A city scene at night. There are bright lights and people walking with their features blurred. Arrows are painted on the road, pointing downwards.

De-escalating Conflict

Many conflicts get worse than they actually need to be because the participants lose control of themselves and retreat into self-reinforcing patterns of attack and counterattack. Here are some suggestions, drawn from the literature of conflict resolution and psychotherapy, that can be used to de-escalate conflicts.

Two transmasculine people sitting together and having a serious conversation

Giving and Receiving Feedback

‘Feedback’ is a communication to a person or a group which gives that person information¬† about how they affect others. It is important to be able to give feedback in such a way that people can hear it, take it in, evaluate it, and change behaviour which affects their relationship with others.

Smiling archers carry cut out letters spelling peace.

Strategies For Peace

Johan Gultung identified three major approaches to peace: peacekeeping, peacemaking, peacebuilding. Strategies can be applied proactively, to prevent violence occurring or reactively to reduce the likelihood of violence reoccurring. Each strategy on its own cannot really be effective in creating peace without the application of the other strategies.

In a large, dramatically lit auditorium are a crowd of people, around half of whom have their arms raised.

Checklist for a great facilitator

Facilitators help a group to get where it needs to go, whether the focus of a gathering is information sharing, discussion, generating creative options, making decisions, team building or planning for action. Here are some tips and tricks for facilitation, to help you get the most out of your next meeting.