Conflicts are omnipresent in human relations. They are neither inherently good nor bad, but simply facts of life. A conflict situation arises when individuals or groups pursuit incompatible goals. These competing goals can range from needs within the family to competition over scarce resources between members of a community or between states. When competition turns violent, conflict resolution becomes essential as the costs rise with short term and long term implications. This course introduces some of the leading theories of conflict and conflict resolution. The goals of this course are threefold: to introduce students to the background and characteristics of conflict and peace studies; to explore multitude of tools and explanations used by scholars in order to understand peace and conflict; and, to encourage students to explore a complex and interesting subject in an innovative manner through drawing from the existing theories. The course begins with an introduction to conflict theories, focusing on various ways to approach conflict. It also focuses on the conflict at various levels – individual, group, intra-state and interstate. The course then focuses on various approaches to conflict management and conflict resolution.
In this course, the student will be able to
- Develop an understanding of the background and characteristics of conflict and peace studies.
- Explore various tools used by scholars to address a conflict.
- Examine a case study in an innovative manner by applying existing theories.
Area of Study: Conflict and Peace Studies
Prerequisites: Admission into a Program of Study
Instructor: Dr. Debidatta. A. Mahapatra