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In Justice, inAccord by Shauna Ries and Susan Harter

In Justice, inAccord

by Shauna Ries and Susan Harter

312 pages
This book presents the inAccord mediation model for resolving conflict.

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Category: Business:Communications
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About the Book
In Justice, inAccord addresses the need for people to find a sense of fairness and dignity when faced with inevitable life conflicts that include miscommunications within couples, companies, or countries. Shauna Ries, cofounder and President of Mediators Without Borders, and Susan Harter, a renown research professor of Psychology, present the inAccord model of Conflict Resolution and dedicate their book “to all of those in search of justice.” In this book, the authors’ present the inAccord model of mediation as a viable alternative for procedural fairness in the resolution of conflict. In many cases, mediation represents an appropriate alternative to lengthy and time-consuming litigation, which can break the banks and backs of earnest citizens who are simply seeking fairness and justice.

The inAccord model of mediation actively engages the parties in a search for a solution to their particular dispute. Empowerment is a major feature of inAccord. With the help of a mediator, disputants are encouraged to find their own personal voices in order to play an active role in resolving the conflict at hand. A second principle of the inAccord model is transparency, wherein all parties are encouraged to communicate from an authentic stance based on increased self-awareness and increased appreciation for the perspective of the other party. The inAccord mediator introduces three Touchstone Skills of reflecting, reframing, and questioning. This prepares the disputants to effectively negotiate with one another, by increasing self-awareness, engendering compassion, and expanding awareness of the perspective of the other disputant.

A novel component of the inAccord model is its emphasis on the role of emotions that each party experiences around the conflict. Recognition of these emotions at the outset of the mediation process is necessary in order to achieve a lasting resolution. At the beginning of the mediation, the disputants’ emotions are directly assessed through self-report surveys of their own subjective evaluation of their feelings. Two classes of emotions are identified, those viewed as empowering (e.g., optimism, hope) in contrast to those that are disempowering (e.g., depression, despair). The inclusion of survey instruments heightens the disputants’ awareness of each others’ emotions and also allows for the research evaluation of the effectiveness of the inAccord mediation process itself. For example, the results of the first empirical study are dramatic, revealing that by the end of the inAccord mediation, empowering emotions have increased in strength whereas disempowering emotions decreased in strength.

The heart of inAccord is captured in four stages, during which disputants also complete surveys that address both their understanding and satisfaction. In Stage 1, disputants share their respective perspectives. In Stage 2, they develop an agenda and generate possible options. In Stage 3, they develop joint solutions and an initial agreement. In Stage 4, they craft the final Memorandum of Agreement. In Justice, inAccord concludes with the Mediators without Borders economically-sustainable global network of Centers that serve the public and teach inAccord and with a powerful commentary on the implications for justice and peace, whether on the personal, the organizational, or the global stage.

 

 

About the Author
Shauna Ries, President of Mediators without Borders, is an international educator and practitioner in the field of conflict resolution. Ries and Harter created the inAccord Conflict Analysis model for facilitators, mediators, and arbitrators now being utilized around the world to resolve conflicts for couples, companies, and countries.

 

 

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