Conflict Resolution: Services and Resources
The Office of Student Conduct & Conflict Resolution has been building resources to begin to provide conflict and dispute resolution services for the University community. Although we continue to work on formalizing and expanding the specific scope and nature of these services, students, faculty and staff members are all welcome to bring concerns to our Office. We will work to identify appropriate services or resources, either on campus and off, to help resolve issues in a civil, peaceful, and productive manner.
In particular, our Office is exploring the following training, resources, and services:
- Understanding personal conflict styles
- Building dialogue skills
- Conflict coaching
- Facilitated dialogue
- Mediation and conciliation
- Restorative justice
Alternative Dispute & Conflict Resolution of Incidents of Alleged Misconduct
At the discretion of the University and with the agreement of all the parties, incidents of alleged misconduct may be referred to mediation, conciliation, or other dispute resolution process. The goal of these processes is to examine and clarify issues and circumstances underlying disputes, explore areas of agreement and possible courses of action, and derive an agreement that has the approval of all parties.
If the process is successful, the parties will draft and sign an agreement that stipulates the nature of the resolution, including what, if any, actions, outcomes or sanctions the parties must complete (including time periods or dates by which an action must be satisfied). To the extent practicable, actions, outcomes, and sanctions agreed to through these processes will be applied in substantially the same manner as sanctions or outcomes resulting from administrative resolutions or hearings.
Agreements reached through a dispute resolution process are not subject to review, rehearing, or appeal through UHAS or any other designated resolution procedure.
Additional Conflict Resolution Services & Resources
Here are some links to additional conflict resolution services and resources, including resources at Northwestern, in the greater Evanston/Chicago area, and beyond:
- Dispute Resolution Resource Center (Kellogg School of Management)
- Program on Negotiation and Mediation (Northwestern Law School's Bluhm Legal Clinic)
- Dispute Resolution Certificate Program (School of Continuing Studies)
- Restorative Justice Evanston (Evanston)
- Center for Conflict Resolution (Downtown Chicago)
- Conflict Information Consortium (University of Colorado at Boulder)
Reflection on Conflict and Civility
But at a time when our discourse has become so sharply polarized - at a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who think differently than we do - it's important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not a way that wounds….
As we discuss these issues, let each of us do so with a good dose of humility. Rather than pointing fingers or assigning blame, let us use this occasion to expand our moral imaginations, to listen to each other more carefully, to sharpen our instincts for empathy, and remind ourselves of all the ways our hopes and dreams are bound together….
We may ask ourselves if we've shown enough kindness and generosity and compassion to the people in our lives. Perhaps we question whether we are doing right by our children, or our community, and whether our priorities are in order. We recognize our own mortality, and are reminded that in the fleeting time we have on this earth, what matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame - but rather, how well we have loved, and what small part we have played in bettering the lives of others.
President Barack Obama, Tucson Memorial Speech, Jan. 12, 2011