Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation


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The concentration in Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation offers an approach to conflict as a pathway toward greater creativity and productivity in all human systems. In it, we examine selected conflicts in recent history, discover their apparent sources, and look at the strategies to successfully exercise leadership to transform the conflict and enrich the perspective we bring to each of the conflicts we experience.

You Will Focus On:

  • An approach to conflict as a pathway to greater creativity and productivity in all human systems
  • Deepening your practical knowledge in fostering transformative learning and change in human systems
  • Examining conflicts in recent history, examining their apparent sources and strategies for successfully managing or transforming the conflict
  • Mastering key componencies for interpersonal and group facilitation by completing the school's 60-hour mediation certification course based on simulations and live case studies from learners' work or community practice
  • Translate competencies into practice by completing an action research project that includes individualized coaching and practice within your profession


Your Learning Goals Will Include:

  • Understand the role conflict plays in the evolution of organizations, communities, and cultures - leading either to destruction, stasis, systems adaptation or transformation
  • Frame conflict as opportunity, transforming it into a source of creative development for the systems involved - within yourself, in relationships, in and between groups, communities, and organizations
  • Engage, manage and transform conflict as an agent of change within a variety of settings


Concentration Course Curriculum:

Module VII CONCENTRATION COURSE #1: Foundational Skills for Mediation and Conflict Transformation
This course cultivates interpersonal awareness, communication, active listening, and group facilitation skills, while learning to 1) balance power dynamics; 2) support inclusivity of race, culture and gender-related issues in mediation; 3) process high emotions and anger; 4) break impasses; 5) promote empathy; 6) build durable agreements; and 7) develop individualized and systems-centered approaches to peacebuilding and conflict transformation. The course integrates and applies the skills in nonviolent communication, values development, systems thinking, and leadership engaged in the first six courses of the M.A. in Leadership program, with a special focus on engaging the specific conflicts that are emerging in contemporary organizations and communities. Participants are awarded a 60-Hour Certificate of Completion in Mediation Practices.
Module IX CONCENTRATION COURSE #2: Learning Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation through Action Research
This course helps participants apply peacebuilding and conflict transformation practices in work, volunteer, or personal settings, and connect their experiences with the learning represented by others in the concentration by creating a peacebuilding & conflict transformation Community of Practice. Participants will receive individualized coaching to integrate and apply their learning in their chosen setting.
Module X CONCENTRATION COURSE #3: Practicum in Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation
Using the participants’ ongoing action research experience as a referent, this course supports and challenges participants to cultivate a learning community devoted to peacebuilding and conflict transformation in their own organizations, engage in systems analysis to identify interpersonal and organizational conflicts and impasses, plan and engage in modest interventions to transform conflicts into collaborative relationships, and evaluate and learn from these experiences. This course results in a personal and professional development plan, optimally supported by professional learning communities, with strategies for ongoing personal and organizational learning.