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Book Cover
Author Forester, John, 1948- author

Title Dealing with differences : dramas of mediating public disputes / John Forester
Published Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2009
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (ix, 228 pages)
Contents Introduction: Discovery, Creativity, and Change in the Face of Conflict -- Part One: When Parties Conflict, Expect that More Is Possible than Anyone Says -- 1. Beyond Promises: Making Public Participation and Democratic Deliberation Work -- 2. Cultivating Surprise and the Art of the Possible: The Drama of Mediating Differences -- Part Two: Respecting Value Differences and Acting Practically Together Too -- 3. Exploring Values-Based Disputes -- 4. Dealing with Deep Value Differences in Participatory Processes -- Part Three: From Venting and Posturing to Learning and Proposing
Summary Conflict and dispute pervade political and policy discussions. Moreover, unequal power relations tend to heighten levels of conflict. In this context of contention, figuring out ways to accommodate others and reach solutions that are agreeable to all is a perennial challenge for activists, politicians, planners, and policymakers. John Forester is one of America's eminent scholars of progressive planning and dispute resolution in the policy arena, and in Dealing with Differences he focuses on a series of 'hard cases'--conflicts that appeared to be insoluble yet which were resolved in the end. Forester ranges across the country--from Hawaii to Maryland to Washington State--and across issues--the environment, ethnic conflict, and HIV. Throughout, he focuses on how innovative mediators settled seemingly intractable disputes. Between pessimism masquerading as 'realism' and the unrealistic idealism that 'we can all get along, ' Forester identifies the middle terrain where disputes do actually get resolved in ways that offer something for all sides. Dealing with Differences serves as an authoritative and fundamentally pragmatic pathway for anyone who has to engage in the highly contentious worlds of planning and policymaking. Publisher description
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 207-218) and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Mediation.
Policy sciences.
Political planning -- Citizen participation.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2009004890
ISBN 0199745013 (electronic bk.)
9780199745012 (electronic bk.)