Tag Archives: conflict resolution

Dialogue Across Differences in Faith and World View

From the Tri-Co Courageous Conversations Planning Committee:

We warmly invite you to an interfaith conference taking place at Bryn Mawr College on February 1 and 2, 2018:

“Courageous Conversations: Equipping Ourselves for Dialogue Across Differences in Faith and World View”

The conference will equip participants to frame useful questions that allow them to deeply listen, moving beyond “us vs. them” and hearing the personal fears, desires and experiences of others. A thoughtful speaker, case studies, and practical techniques will be part of the program.

The program includes a Thursday evening dinner and speaker, followed by Friday workshops. There will be a break for Jummah (Muslim prayers) and an optional Shabbat service at the end of the day on Friday. Staff and faculty are welcome to attend parts or all of the program. There is no cost. This is supported by InterFaith Youth Core, the organization that brought Eboo Patel to our campus in November.

If you plan on coming fill this out: https://brynmawr.wufoo.com/forms/courageous-conversations/

During the planning process, the committee was intentional about choosing a start that would make it convenient for Swat students, faculty and staff to attend (see schedule below) .

Tri-Co shuttle from Swat schedule.

  • Feb 1 at 4:50 (if you want good food at BM) or 6:40 (if you come for the keynote speaker)
  • Feb 2 at 8:30 AM (if you want a HOT breakfast and participate in workshops) or 1:05 PM (if you want to participate in afternoon workshops)

For more information, contact Eishna Ranganathan at erangan1 or Joyce Tompkins at jtompki1

Law as a Tool for Social Justice and Conflict Resolution

Law as a Tool for Social Justice and Conflict Resolution

Mark Schwartz ‘75

Tuesday, December 6th, 2016
4:30-6:00 p.m.
Kohlberg Hall, Room 228
Swarthmore College (directions)

This talk and discussion will feature a Swarthmore alum who has run his own private law practice for decades in service of social justice.

 

Mark Schwartz will discuss how the law can also be used as a tool for conflict resolution. Whether supporting the gay community in responding to discrimination, women facing workplace harassment, racist policies that
marginalize people of color, or whistleblowers exposing corruption in the public and private sectors, Schwartz works tirelessly to ensure that justice is served and that conflict is resolved fairly.

Sponsored by Peace and Conflict Studies, the Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, and the Office of the Swarthmore Pre-Law Advisor

Welcoming Professors Buiza and Levin

We extend hearty welcomes to Prof. Nanci Buiza in the Spanish program, who is joining the Peace and Conflict Studies steering committee AND Prof. Andrew Levin in the Department of Political Science.

Prof. Levin is teaching POLS 004 International Politics and POLS 052 International Conflict Resolution: Prospects and Pitfalls.

If you see Prof. Buiza or Prof. Levin on campus (or in class!), welcome them!

Sluiter to speak on theories of conflict resolution

From our friends in the Classics Department:

Please join us for the Annual Martin Ostwald Lecture

October 24th, 4:30 pm, Science Center 199, Swarthmore College

Ineke SluiterTOUGH WORDS, SOFT HEARTS
Ineke Sluiter, Leiden University

Sluiter will use theories of conflict resolution to examine ancient and modern debates on the right course of action and how they invoke arguments and rhetorical strategies derived from morality and self-interest. Examples will include Thucydides and the modern debate about the financial crisis in Greece.

 

Meet Eben Weitzman ’84 Conflict Resolution Professor and Consider Graduate Study

Eben Weitzman '84 and George Lakey
Prof. Eben Weitzman ’84 and Prof. George Lakey at the 2012 PJSA meetings

It was great to have the opportunity to meet Eben Weitzman ’84 at the Peace and Justice Studies Association meetings at Tufts University during the fall 2012 semester. Prof. Weitzman was sharing information at the meetings about programs in conflict resolution at the University of Massachusetts, where he teaches.

He has kindly written a blog post about his Swarthmore experience and his career in conflict resolution studies:

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My experience at Swarthmore provided the foundation for the directions my life has taken, especially my work in peace and conflict resolution.  The combination of Swarthmore’s roots in the Quaker tradition of commitment to peace and justice on the one hand, and its dedication to intellectual rigor on the other, spoke to me, inspired me, and gave me the tools I would need.
When I went looking for a Ph.D. mentor, I came across the great social psychologist Morton Deutsch—one of the founders of the field of conflict resolution—at Columbia University.  Mort would often say that he was looking for people with soft hearts and hard heads. I think this is about as important an idea as any for those of us in the conflict resolution business, and Swarthmore had already done a lot to help shape me in this direction.  Why soft hearts and hard heads?
Soft Hearts: If you work with conflict, chances are you do it because you care about something enough to do challenging, sometimes painful work.  That’s good.  The world needs more people like you.
Hard Heads:  Here’s the tricky part.  It’s good to be a softie.  It’s good to let your caring and your compassion drive your work.  But: Once you settle on a problem, now you have to think carefully, clearly, deeply, and systematically about the problem you’re trying to solve.
  • You have to hold yourself to high standards.
  • You have to subject your work to rigorous test, whether it’s empirical research or practice in the field.
  • You have to be willing to accept answers you don’t like.
Because as much as the world needs more people who care, what the world needs even more is people who care, and who also have what it takes to do something about the things they care about.  Swarthmore’s grounding in Quaker values, and its commitment to providing what I believe is one of the finest intellectual preparations you can find, is a perfect incubator for the soft-hearted, hard-headed people the world of peace and conflict resolution needs.
As a political science major at Swat with strong interests in psychology and philosophy as well, I had the opportunity to study political science with an eye on questions of justice, to learn about political philosophy, ethics, political psychology, cultural anthropology, and more.  And as any Swat student knows, being surrounded by dedicated, committed, engaged, visionary fellow students was one of the most important parts of the whole experience.  That’s one of the reasons both of my sons are studying there now.
I graduated from Swarthmore in 1984.  Since then I’ve earned a Ph.D. in social psychology, and had the opportunity to work with labor unions and human rights NGOs, corporations and schools, hospitals, animal rescue networks, Federal disaster relief teams, and more.  Right now I’m engaged with a project in Nigeria working on peace building between Christians and Muslims; a project here in Boston that provides dialogue channels between the federal law enforcement agencies and the local Muslim and Sikh communities; a group that uses the sport of Ultimate Frisbee (Go Earthworms and Warmothers!) to bring together Arab Israeli, Jewish Israeli, and Palestinian kids;  a project to promote more effective teamwork in local hospitals; and a leadership development and strategic planning process with a local union.

Eben Weitzman '84

Above all, the focus in my professional life is educating the next generation of peacemakers.  I direct the Graduate Programs in Conflict Resolution at UMass Boston, and I chair the Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security and Global Governance in which those programs are located.  Our program here is driven by the orientation I’ve described here: it’s all about cultivating soft hearts and hard heads.

The program is designed to provide students with the ability to understand, effectively manage, and intervene in conflict situations that arise among individuals and groups, locally and globally. Students explore the causes, dynamics, and consequences of conflict in a variety of settings; they learn techniques of conflict analysis and resolution, problem solving, and collaborative decision making; and develop skills in negotiation, mediation, dialogue and facilitation.

Within UMass Boston we are housed in the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, a dynamic environment that houses three academic departments as well as numerous centers and institutes. These provide opportunities for students to participate in research and field projects locally and globally. Conferences and lectureships allow students to network with outstanding scholars and practitioners from a variety of fields.

Students come to our programs from six continents and more than thirty countries, bringing a wide range of backgrounds and a rich diversity of experience. Some are midcareer, while others arrive directly from undergraduate degree programs.

We have 2 current Fulbrights studying with us from abroad, and 8 new Fulbright applicants for the Fall!

Alumni of our programs are doing exciting and important things in a variety of settings; examples include:

Direct mediation services
United Nations ; World Bank
Superior Court of the District of Columbia
Metro-West Community Mediation

Ombuds offices
Princeton and Cornell Universities
National Institutes of Health
American Red Cross

Business and Non-Profits
eBay and PayPal (online dispute resolution)
Human Resources, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care
Mass General Hospital
Advocacy for Refugee & Immigrant Services for Empowerment
Ministry of Energy, Nigeria

Our beautiful campus on Boston Harbor offers our diverse student population both an intimate learning environment and the rich experience of a great American city.

I would love to hear from Swarthmore students looking for graduate study in conflict resolution, or even just curious to learn more about the field. Another good contact is our Associate Director, Roni Lipton roni.lipton (at) umb.edu

Please note that our deadline is fast approaching: it’s March 15!! If you are interested but may not be able to get things together by the deadline, please reach out to me directly and we’ll work with you.

Please also consider joining us in April for a 2-day symposium on Bridging Global Religious Divides, and consider submitting a paper for next October’s 10th Biennial Student Conference: “Conflict Studies: The Next Generation of Ideas.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Contact Information:
Eben A. Weitzman, Ph.D.
eben.weitzman (at) umb.edu
617-287-7238