Are you seeking information about conflict literacy for yourself or an organization? Linked below is a small sampling of articles, tools, podcasts, and trainings that we have learned about through our interviews with movement leaders, activists and conflict transformation practitioners. We do not guarantee results from these resources, yet share them since they have been of support to others. We would appreciate learning what works and what does not for you. If you have recommendations for additional resources or want to share feedback on items on this list, please let us know.
Resources can be found in the following categories:
TO LISTEN (Podcasts and Webinars)
TO ENGAGE (Assessments, Memorable Acronyms and Trainings)
TO READ (Quick Reads, Blogs, Longer Reads and Facilitation Manuals)
The Wildfire Project on Transforming Toxic Movement Culture
For the Wild Podcast
Joshua Kahn, BJ Star, and Michael Strom from The Wildfire Project join Ayana in a conversation on toxic movement culture, thinking about power structurally, generative conflict, self-limitations, and collective liberation as social movements adapt to this time of revelation and disintegration. 1 hour
Facilitating Conflict & Leading from the Feminine
Healing Justice Podcast
Celia Kutz of Training for Change joins host Kate Werning for a conversation about conflict as a generative place that can offer groups deeper clarity and insight. She speaks of strong emotions, mental health, and showing up leading from the feminine — what it means to reclaim expressing strong feelings as a political act, inner diversity, confusing group dynamics, and de-individualizing care. 1 hour
Mapping Group Conflict
Healing Justice Podcast
Ever get disoriented in a conflict? This group conflict dynamics mapping practice is meant for supporting feelings of overwhelm with a clear tool for finding ground in moments of chaos. Join Celia Kutz from Training for Change to write or draw some things out. You’ll be prompted to call to mind a recent conflict experience, either interpersonal or group. 20 minutes
Trauma, Healing & Collective Power
In June 2018, generative somatics (gs) created a podcast with Spenta Kandawalla, Prentis Hemphill and Staci K. Haines, hosted by adrienne maree brown. They had a conversation about trauma, oppression, healing and organizing for structural change. The discussion digs into the connections between personal, collective and structural transformation, and between healing and building collective power.
Restorative Justice on the Rise podcast
National Association for Restorative & Community Justice
These podcast episodes aim to provide connection, advocacy, education and inspired action as a public service to individuals and communities seeking to proactively improve relationships and structures within their spheres and our world.
Talk It Out Radio
A how-to and what-to-do program where skilled hosts welcome guests and callers to practice empathy, mindfulness, and effective communication. Do you want tools for connection, conflict resolution, and compassion for self and others? This radio program explores skills, knowledge, and resources to empower you to connect across differences.
The hosts of this podcast interview leaders, luminaries, change makers, and provocateurs on conflict. In episode 10, Val Napoleon, a professor, visual artist, author and a member of Saulteau First Nation who discusses various types of spaces for difficult conversations and the value of Indigenous oral histories and stories. In episode 16, Caroline Casey, the host of The Visionary Activist Show, talks about lessons learned about conflict after living 19 years with a wolf as well as how to ‘cook’ anger with the power of questions.
Our Homes & Neighborhoods: Interpersonal Violence Intervention
In episode one of the Love the People Webinar Series, ingredients for transformative interventions are shared and ways to implement intervention practices are explored. Beginning at minute 30, the presenters speak about the difference between conflict and violence and provide ideas of how to approach conflict as a life-giving opportunity. At minute 45, personal stories are shared. 1 hour and 30 minutes
Restorative Justice 101
National Association for Community & Restorative Justice
In this webinar, Dr. Sandra Pavelka & Molly Rowan Leach provide an overview of restorative justice (RJ) in the US & beyond. This is not a facilitation skills training. The two sessions provide great insights into program successes, why recidivism is so low with RJ, and how the US is fast-adopting a restorative lens in cross-spectrum human services areas.
Your Style Under Stress Assessment
Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High
This assessment is not specific to movements, however, it can be a helpful self-reflection tool. The book also has some very useful frameworks and simple processes to use for having crucial conversations.
Our Healthy Alliance Assessment
Movement Strategy Center & RoadMap Consulting
This assessment helps your new alliance or existing one take stock of your work, structure and culture, and decide what you want to strengthen for the future.
Memorable Acronyms & Questions to Consider When In Conflict
Tools for Addressing Chapter Conflict
By Prentis Hemphill with help from the Black Lives Matter Healing Justice Working group
When we understand the nature of conflict we can also understand that conflict between us, in our chapters, and within our network is an expected and common issue. This tool provides context and questions about trauma, triggers, direct communication, restorative justice/transformative justice and facilitating process to attend to conflict. 5 pages
Active Listening Sheet
United States Institute of Peace
This matrix offers distinction between different aspects of listening meant to increase one’s ability to encourage, elicit, clarify, empathize and reframe. 1 page
CLARA Method of De-escalation (included on page 8 and 9 of this training handout)
Interfaith Council for Peace and Justice & Meta Peace Teams
In high-stress situations, CLARA is an acronym that can help us remember to 1) Center self and develop intention 2) Listen 3) Affirm 4) Reflect 5) Ask questions and Add information. The tool is used widely among peacebuilders in conflict zones around the world. 11 pages
D.E.A.R. Process For Broken Agreements
- DECLARE: Acknowledge to the peope invovled, that a discussion is needed about an agreement has been broken, whether it be implicit or explicit, and how it was broken.
- EXPLORE IMPACT: Ask about the impact on those involved.
- AMENDS: Offer amends to actively contribute to the relationship as a demonstration that you value the peope involved and the relationships.
- RECOMMIT: Recommit or renegotiate the agreement.
Visit our Grantmaking page for links to our grant partners who may be hosting upcoming trainings.
Many community mediation centers, such as our grant partner SEEDS, offer low cost mediation and 40 hour trainings. Some centers may be located through the National Association of Community Mediation. The one-page article titled, Challenging Neutrality, Examining Privilege And Encouraging Practitioner Self-Reflexivity: A Social Justice Approach To Alternative Dispute Resolution explores the importance of mediators developing a deep understanding of various cultural approaches and self-awareness about assumptions and privilege as a mediator.
5 Day Social Justice Mediation Training (In-Person Training)
Social Justice Mediation Institute
This model was developed in response to a growing body of scholarship revealing that commonly used mediation models and practices do not serve all disputing parties equally despite best intentions. This training explores how identity and power imbalances affect the development and resolution of conflict and is offered yearly in Massachusetts.
How to Do Transformational Work (In-Person Training)
Training for Change
Learn how to extend experiential education into the domain of transformation, assisting workshop participants to identify and loosen their emotional blocks to greater effectiveness. This workshop will assist you to help groups use the “teachable moment” — and the emotions that can surface — to more full empowerment. The training takes place in Philadelphia.
Tailored Trainings by Democracy, Politics, and Conflict Engagement Initiative (In-person)
Mediators Beyond Borders
This highly skilled team of conflict professions provides trainings and systems design to strengthen organizational conflict resolution capacity. Interest-based conflict resolution and transformation methodologies provide deeply democratic, citizen-centered approaches that focus on chronic, systemic sources of conflict and identify practical tools for not just settling or compromising, but fundamentally resolving, transforming, and preventing destructive conflict.
Bystander Intervention (Online Training)
At this moment in history, we are witnessing a spike in public harassment, bias incidents, and hate violence. As bystanders, we need to be especially vigilant and aware of what harassment, bias incidents, and hate violence look like in order to be able to stand up and intervene at a time when people need it most. Learn how to apply the 5 Ds: Direct, Distract, Delegate, Delay and Document in this online training.
Living Into Conflict (Online & In-Person Training)
Conflict is inevitable, but you can learn tools that make conflict safe. Recognize ways different cultures interpret and manage conflict. Reduce triggers, and build understanding and resilience. A PeoplesHub trainer joins your group virtually to help you all work together to develop tools to navigate conflict, and foster understanding and inclusion.
Conflict Fundamentals (Free Online Seminars)
This series was developed by university professors in response to the recurring question:”What can be done to defuse the deepening level of distrust, hostility, and even hate that we see growing daily in the United States and elsewhere around the world?” The series is meant to accompany the “What Everyone Can Do” blog.
Dialogue: A Virtual Workshop
This series of 12 videos talks about the nature of conflict and the power of dialogue to shift destructive patterns, while outlining the process of building a dialogue. From understanding the importance of participant preparation to developing the right questions to ask in a dialogue, these videos illustrate Essential Partner’s approach—and the principles behind it.
Why I’ve Started to Fear My Fellow Social Justice Activists
By Frances Lee
We are alienating each other with unrestrained callouts and unchecked self-righteousness. Here are some ways that can stop. 1 page
10 Tips for Receiving Critical Feedback – A Guide for Activists
By Brooke Anderson of Movement Generation
Have you ever received feedback — gentle or not — that you were bringing the same behaviors into social movement spaces that you thought you were there to fight? Did you react with disbelief or defensiveness? Spiral into shame or self-doubt? Disengage and disappear from the work? Or were you able to learn from the feedback, repair harm, and recommit to a lifetime of shifting your practices to better align your values and actions? 4 pages
We Have to Talk: A Step by Step Checklist for Difficult Conversations
By Judy Ringer
Here is a brief synopsis of some best practice strategies: a checklist of action items to think about before going into a difficult conversation; some useful concepts to practice during the conversation; and some tips and suggestions to help you stay focused and flowing in general, including possible conversation openings. 2 pages
The Transformative Power of Practice
By Ng’ethe Maina and Staci Haines of generative somatics
Explore the liberation possible when default practices that can result in us acting and reacting in ways that make us more difficult for others to trust, less effective in our work, or more limited in our approaches to systemic change and movement building are transformed into intentional practices. 4 pages
Challenging Neutrality, Examining Privilege And Encouraging Practitioner Self-Reflexivity: A Social Justice Approach To Alternative Dispute Resolution
By Elli Nagai-Rothe
The dominant approaches to mediation, mediators and facilitators are valued and selected for their ability to separate themselves from the conflict. Contrastingly, many indigenous conflict resolution models emphasize relationships over technique, involving family and community members in the collective transformation of conflict. Deepening understanding of various cultural approaches and engaging in critical self-awareness about assumptions and privilege is a vital process in becoming a more effective conflict practitioner. 1 page
Black Youth Project 100
This is a statement by the accountability teams that have been working since early December 2015 to address an incident of sexual harm by BYP100 member Malcolm London that happened and made public with permission of all parties involved as a gift to the broader community which is not familiar or accustomed to formal processes of community accountability and transformative justice. 1 page
By John Paul Lederach
This is an abridged version of John Paul Lederach’s longer The Little Book of Conflict Transformation, published by Good Books. Michelle Maiese selected excerpts to create this version, with the permission of John Paul Lederach and the publisher. 5 pages
Blogs & Longer Reads
We are currently compiling a list of recommended books which will be posted here soon. Please contact us to let us know of your favorites.
Blog – Bay Area Nonviolent Communication
A range of authors provide perspectives on anger, empathy, the difference between ‘calling in’ and ‘calling out’ as well as approaches for effective listening.
Blog – Things You Can Do To Help
In this blog a wide range of concepts and practices are lifted up by professors, Guy and Heidi Burgess, who have devoted their career to collecting and disseminating resources for conflict transformation.
Building the Bigger We: A Conversation About Restorative Justice Movement Building
By Jovida Ross of Movement Strategy and Restorative Justice practitioner Rose Elizondo
This transcribed conversation explores stories and concepts that help cultivate vibrant movement ecosystems through sections such as Restorative Justice As a Way of Life, Visioning Justice that Heals Harms, and Restoring a Just Balance of Power. 24 pages
Robert Gass of the Social Transformation Project
A foundational principle in all transformation work in best expressed in the now-famous quote from Gandhi, “We must be the change.” This applies to us as change agents, no less than our clients. Our ability to facilitate dealing with the emotions of others is completely dependent on how well we know and are comfortable with our own emotions. This piece explores questions and approaches for self-guided work as well as when facilitating work with others. 14 pages
Facilitation Tools & Manuals
An Extensive Catalogue of Exercises and Tools
Training for Change
This online catalogue offers tools for 3rd party intervention which highlights practices for peacebuilding, non-violence as well as a section on de-escalation and bystander tactics. Training for Changes’ frameworks and activities for diversity and anti-oppression tools highlight effective approaches for dialogue, community building and group work. There is also a whole section on team building.
Fumbling Towards Repair – A Workbook for Community Accountability Facilitators
By Mariame Kaba and Shira Hassan
This workbook includes reflection questions, skill assessments, facilitation tips, helpful definitions, activities, and hard-learned lessons intended to support people who have taken on the coordination and facilitation of formal community accountability processes to address interpersonal harm & violence.
Strategic Questioning Manual
By Fran Peavey
Fran Peavey worked on the concept of strategic questioning as a way of facilitating “dynamic” listening, which creates new information and uncovers deep desires of the heart rather than communicating information already known. This manual provides examples and explores how to develop strategic questions for interpersonal, organizational and societal transformation.
Courageous Conversations Toolkit
Social Transformation Project
A series of articles, best practices, and tools for engaging successfully in challenging conversations. This tool can help leaders and consultants break patterns of procrastination and avoidance in dealing with challenging and uncomfortable relational situations. Learn best practices and tools to create more successful outcomes from these conversations. 15 pages
Connecting, Inspiring, & Collaborating With Changemakers Facilitation Manual
Developed over 24 years of experiences with YES! camps and Jams, this manual is full of over 200 practices, tools, games and resources to support changemakers at all levels to bring forth thriving, just and sustainable ways of life for all. It explores working with different conflict styles and also has an extensive organizing compendium.
Peacebuilding Training Guide
Karuna Center for Peacebuilding
This manual offers insights, tools and exercises from practitioners who have traveled the world developing and implementing sustainable strategies for conflict transformation in partnership with local organizations. In publishing this training guide, Karuna Center invites the reader into the philosophy behind their peacebuilding efforts, as well as shares the details of workshop designs, the countries in which they have taught them, and useful materials for the tasks of teaching and learning.