Standard Article

Conflict Resolution

  1. Taya R. Cohen

Published Online: 30 JAN 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470479216.corpsy0219

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology

How to Cite

Cohen, T. R. 2010. Conflict Resolution. Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology. 1–2.

Author Information

  1. Northwestern University

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 30 JAN 2010


Conflict occurs in situations in which two or more interdependent parties (either individuals or groups) have interests, outcomes, and/or goals that are incompatible in some way (Deutsch, 1973; Deutsch & Coleman, 2000; Kelley et al., 2003; Schelling, 1980). If the parties are completely independent, or if their interests, outcomes, and goals are completely compatible, then no conflict can exist, because, to put it colloquially, there is nothing to fight about. Conflict can occur in both cooperative and competitive contexts (Deutsch, 1973), as well as in “mixed-motive” contexts that are marked by a combination of competitive and cooperative features. When the parties' interests are generally compatible or positively correlated, then resolving the conflict requires coordination (Kelley et al., 2003; Schelling, 1980).


  • conflict resolution;
  • conflict management;
  • cooperation;
  • competition;
  • intergroup conflict