Picture of boy being examining by doctor at a tuberculosis sanatorium

Understanding our future through Open Access research about our past...

Strathprints makes available scholarly Open Access content by researchers in the Centre for the Social History of Health & Healthcare (CSHHH), based within the School of Humanities, and considered Scotland's leading centre for the history of health and medicine.

Research at CSHHH explores the modern world since 1800 in locations as diverse as the UK, Asia, Africa, North America, and Europe. Areas of specialism include contraception and sexuality; family health and medical services; occupational health and medicine; disability; the history of psychiatry; conflict and warfare; and, drugs, pharmaceuticals and intoxicants.

Explore the Open Access research of the Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare. Or explore all of Strathclyde's Open Access research...

Image: Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. Wellcome Collection - CC-BY.

Do you see what I'm dealing with here? : vicious circles in conflict

Irvine, Charlie (2013) Do you see what I'm dealing with here? : vicious circles in conflict. Journal of Mediation and Applied Conflict Analysis. p. 3.

Full text not available in this repository. Request a copy from the Strathclyde author

Abstract

We know that our thinking is affected by conflict; this applies to groups and nations as much as to individuals. Mediators are at the sharp end of this phenomenon, and those we work with often find each other’s behaviour at best inexplicable and at worst malicious. This article considers how biases and heuristics (mental shortcuts) can exacerbate disputes. Two cognitive biases in particular can contribute to the growth of conflict: the fundamental attribution error and the self-serving bias. Using a workplace mediation case study the article traces the step-by-step mechanics of conflict in people’s thinking and its tendency to set in motion vicious circles of suspicion and defence. It goes on to provide a critique of bullying and harassment policies before proposing that they begin with a mediation stage in order to combat attribution errors by bringing more data into play.