Edited by Jonathan Wilkenfeld, Kyle Beardsley and David Quinn
Chapter 6: Mediation and its compatibility with other conflict management approaches
Third parties employ myriad conflict management strategies when intervening in an interstate crisis. Of these, disputants turn frequently to mediation, which allows them to retain control over the process and outcome of their dispute while also receiving third-party assistance. Mediation, however, does not occur in isolation. Most interstate conflicts experience multiple conflict management attempts, many of which are not mediation. Mindful of this, the authors review the most prominent alternatives to mediation, including legal approaches (arbitration and adjudication), sanctions, and peacekeeping. For each strategy, they sketch its defining characteristics, compare and contrast these to mediation (as a baseline), and then explore an understudied, yet critical, aspect: the compatibility and sequencing of conflict management strategies. In particular, they explore how each strategy fits with the logic of mediation, and demonstrate how some combinations and sequences of strategies may enhance conflict management, while others undermine it.
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