Conflict resolution across cultures: A hawaii perspective and a pacific mediation model


  • Bruce E. Barnes

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    • Bruce E. Barnes is a researcher with the Program on Conflict Resolution, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu. He is a founding board member of and serves as a mediator and trainer of mediators for the Neighborhood Justice Center of Honolulu.


This article reviews various consensual methods of conflict resolution—mediation, negotiation, and facilitation—and indigenous culture techniques capable of becoming culturally appropriate for disputes across cultures. Models of addressing multicultural disputes such as community boards, ethnic conciliation commissions, educational campaigns in sovereignty movements, and cross-cultural comediation are discussed from a Hawaii practitioner's perspective. Peacemaking techniques from Samoan, Hawaiian, Laotian, Filipino, Japanese, Chinese, and Native American cultures are highlighted. The Pacific model for mediation, negotiation, and facilitation of cross-cultural conflict is introduced; this model was developed in relation to cultures of the Pacific Basin, especially those cultures present in Hawaii.