DPACE Conflict Literacy Framework

Welcome to the DPACE Conflict Literacy Framework

A roadmap for leaders, organizers, activists, conflict practitioners, and peacebuilders within social movements and political organizations in the US to build their conflict literacy, resilience, and engage with conflict creatively and constructively.

The Project

Social movements and political organizations work in an ever-changing environment. In order to achieve their mission and promote positive social change, they need to master a range of abilities, including recognizing the seeds of conflict, learning to manage & resolve disputes, and engage constructively with conflicts. These skills are applicable in their work, in their organizations, and in the communities they serve.

Our goal is not simply to increase civility within those movements and organizations. Our goal is to improve the ability to explore differences without losing touch with our common humanity, directing our passions in the direction of social and political problem-solving. The world is in need of a new kind of diplomacy and social sensibility. We must be equipped to engage mindfully and transform our heartfelt intentions into compassionate actions which support the common good.

The Need

Conflict is a fundamental part of social movements and political life. Debate and conflict within is important at times, but these conflicts are often handled in negative ways that undermine the movements’ aims and values. Conflict doesn't need to be a negative force. When handled with skill and understanding, conflict and disagreement can become a generative and restorative force - bringing forth new ideas and building resilience.

Interest-based conflict resolution and transformation methods provide deeply democratic, citizen-centered approaches that focus on chronic, systemic sources of conflict. Moreover, they are practical tools for not just settling or compromising, but for resolving and transforming conflict.

The Framework

This framework is designed to build conflict literacy and resilience, and provide a suite of available services and resources. Each module includes basic knowledge of a particular subject area as well as tools and approaches for engaging in internal and external conflict. The aim is to invite users to invest in the realization that conflict literacy can be constructive and generative, and will help them better achieve their mission.

The framework includes both researched-based and best/promising practices in the fields of conflict management, mediation, systems design, and mindful awareness. The framework intends to contribute to setting standards and common terminology within these community and social/political spaces.

The work represented in this framework is the work of many conflict professionals whose collective experience is broad and deep, but we recognize that our experiences cannot and do not encompass the diverse cultures of those who use it. We recommend customization of this framework, its tools, and resources in order to meet the needs and interests of individuals, groups, organizations, and communities.

The Team

We would like to thank the Conflict Transformation Fund for their guidance and financial support in the creation of this framework.

We would also like to thank the team of committed conflict engagement practitioners, peace builders, and contemplative practice practitioners who were an invaluable part of the creative design and development of this framework:
Wendy Wood, Kenneth Cloke, Duncan Autrey, Mark Baril, Mary Leichliter, Jessica Bain, Anna Spain, Jarling Ho, Scott Martin, Rachel Wohl, Su Flickinger, Rose-Anne Moore and Prabha Sankaranarayan.

Our team of highly skilled conflict engagement practitioners and peace builders can support you.
For more information and support, or if you are interested in becoming a member of the DPACE team, please contact dpace@mediatorsbeyondborders.org.

Statement Regarding Intellectual Property

As independent consultants, the authors of this document (as well as resource links and outside content) will retain sole ownership over previously copyrighted written materials and information. When using materials in the framework, interested parties and their agents may use written and oral materials provided; however, MBBI and its independent consultants rights to previously copyrighted materials will be respected and appropriately cited.