Highlights from the 30th Annual IACM Conference

Group photo from IACM 2017 in Berlin, Germany; provided by IACM Team

The 30th Annual International Association for Conflict Management (IACM) Conference recently took place in Berlin, Germany, and brought together students and scholars from around the world. Many from the AC4  team attended the conference, presenting about current research and celebrating the scholarship, learning community and the unique cultural experience in Berlin.

There are a number of highlights from the conference to share and much thanks for this year’s organizers and the IACM team led by 2017 President Shirli Kopelman. The 4-day conference held numerous sessions, including a poster session, short presentations, workshops, novel sessions, keynote talks, and roundtable discussions. The topics throughout were extremely varied and interdisciplinary; on Mediation, for example, it went from Sudan Mediations to A Multi-Faceted Role for Mediators in Civil and Commercial Disputes, and on Negotiation, there was a presentation on Educating Negotiators and also whole series on related topics, such as gender and negotiation or emotional intelligence and negotiation.

Photo from the IACM Awards DInner, with AC4 Fellows and Co-Executive Directors; provided by IACM Team

A signature highlight from the annual event is the awards ceremony when the AC4-IACM fellowship recipients are recognized among other awardees. Each year AC4 offers funding to support new attendees to the conference and to increase diversity among the student presenters. The following are the presentations given by this year’s fellows:

  • Climate Change Adaptation Guidance for the Center for Conflict Resolution in Kampala, Uganda, by Deborah J. Sachare
  • The Importance of Cultural Competence to Address Emotions Effectively in Intercultural Mediation, by Lucia Ferrarese
  • Leveraging Tension for Constructive Change in Multicultural Groups: An Exploratory Interview Study, by Allegra Chen-Carrel (along with Rebecca Bass, Danielle Coon, and Peter T. Coleman)
  • Polluted Morality: How Air Pollution Affects Criminal and Unethical Behaviors, by Guannan Jackson Lu
  • Cultural Perspective on Constructivist Understanding of Judgment, Decision-Making and Conflict Resolution, by Kaidi Wu
  • The Social Fluency Hypothesis: Implications for Research on Coordination, Trust and Cooperation, by Nathaniel Nakashima

Another highlight was learning about current work and convening with colleagues, both new and others with more familiarity, even from various schools at Columbia University as well as Columbia alum and AC4 fellowship alum! Some colleagues included staff and faculty from the Morton Deutsch International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution (MD-ICCCR) and the Negotiation and Conflict Resolution (NeCR) Master’s program.

Photo: Presenters following Creative Approaches on Security, Protection and Empowerment, including Meredith Smith (AC4 program manager), April Bang (TC doctorate student, MD-ICCCR research intern alum, AC4 fellow alum), Venera Kusari (NECR alum), Pascal da Rocha (NECR faculty), Aline Mugisho (former AC4 visiting scholar), Connie Sun (NECR associate director, ); taken by: Danielle Coon


Photo: Poonam Arora, incoming AC4 visiting scholar; taken by Meredith Smith.


Photo: Jaclyn Donahue (AC4 program manager) and Danielle Coon (MD-ICCCR associate director); taken by Connie Sun


Photo: Bilan Stribling, NECR alum, former AC4 fellow; taken by Meredith Smith

Bilan Stribling, an alumna of the Masters in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution (NECR) Program at Columbia, presented on Stabilization & Reconstruction in the Democratic Republic of Congo: Assessing the Conditions of Poverty and Resilience for Internally Displaced Persons.

Also, April H. Bang, current doctorate student at Teachers College, presented on three different topics throughout the conference, including a poster session on Leadership as Orchestrating Conflict, a co-presentation on Adaptive Leadership: A Framework and Practice for Constructive Conflict Engagement in Complex Environments (with Marc Manashil and Hugh O’Doherty), and a novel session on Creative Approaches to Security, Protection and Empowerment (in photo above).

To read more highlights from the conference, including news about the award that Professor Peter T. Coleman won: read here!

Photo: Peter T. Coleman wins IACM Award; taken by Connie Sun

And, for more about our fellowship program, please visit AC4 – IACM Fellowships webpage: here or contact us at ac4columbia@gmail.com.

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