OTPIC Officially Retired

As of December 2, 2005, the Online Training Program on Intractable Conflict (OTPIC) has been officially retired, and is no longer open to new registrations.

The successor to OTPIC is a course called Dealing Constructively with Intractable Conflicts (DCIC). The new curriculum is built around one of our major projects, Beyond Intractability, and offers a much more extensive and informative set of learning materials than that available through OTPIC.

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International Online Training Program On Intractable Conflict

Conflict Research Consortium, University of Colorado, USA

Communication Pre-Tests

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Often, communications between people involved in conflict situations are misunderstood.  People engaged in conflicts are often speaking in anger or fear; they also see the situation differently, and interpret outside events (including communication) differently.  Thus, it is very common for people to interpret oral or written communication in ways which are very different from what the speaker or writer intended--even when they take care to communicate accurately and honestly.

One strategy for limiting this problem is to "pre-test" draft versions of written documents, speeches, or radio and television segments before officially broadcasting or publishing them. This can help pinpoint possible areas of misunderstanding before they become widespread.  This can be done by recruiting a small test group of people who are both sympathetic with the opposing side and interested in contributing to more accurate communication and a more constructive debate. This group can be asked to review draft versions of communication materials and tell the authors how they think the materials will be interpreted. In cases where the test group identifies areas of probable misunderstanding, the materials can be reworked to avoid the problem.

Links to Related Approaches

Communication Accuracy
Active Listening
Communication Skills Improvement
Public Information Strategy / Media Management

Links to Related Problems

Misinterpretation of Communication
Failure to Understand an Opponent's Perspective
Cultural Barriers to Effective Communication
Misinterpreted Motives

Copyright 1998 Conflict Research Consortium  -- Contact: crc@colorado.edu