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Jacob Bercovitch: Understanding Hands Across the Divide



Daniel Druckman, Department of Public and International Affairs, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA 22030, USA; e-mail:


In this article we provide an overview of the research contributions made by Jacob Bercovitch to the field of international mediation. These contributions include both descriptive findings about the use of mediation and factors that correlate with the successful practice of mediation. Interestingly, three-quarters of the attempts to mediate international conflicts either fail or result in partial settlements. Bercovitch's work informs mediators about ways to improve their practice. The article concludes with personal reflections about the person and our relationship with him.