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August 12, 2022
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Teaching Negotiation for Effective Communication & Conflict Resolution
Basic Level Training
Hosted by U.S. EPA, Community Involvement and Program Initiatives Branch
Community Involvement University (CIU)

What is the course overview?
Environmental issues and programs are a source of potential conflict within any community. Teaching both agency representatives and the general community the most effective ways to negotiate and communicate in conflict will only enhance the discussion and the ability to develop a greater understanding for both groups. Effective communication training can be provided prior to town hall meetings, facilitated group meetings, or mediation and negotiation sessions.

Making the processes of negotiation, mediation, and communication transparent and equal between both the agencies and the community will decrease the potential for misunderstanding and misperceptions. It will also allow both the community members and the agency representatives to have the same understanding of what skills and tools can be used to enhance communication. Through this enhanced communication there is a better opportunity for recognition and empowerment to develop meaningful and sustainable resolutions and agreements.

Who should take this course?
This course is recommended for EPA staffers and community members who participate in meetings and other activities where mistrust and hostility may be prevalent.

What are the course learning objectives?
Participants who complete this course will gain skills on how to:

  • Identify basic tasks and skills that can be taught in negotiation workshops;
  • Initiate the first steps in developing a non-confrontational style of communication; and
  • Enhance communications to increase the opportunity for cooperation.

What are the logistics?
This three-day workshop focuses on the basic tasks or skills that can be taught and practiced within negotiation training workshops. It also highlights how interaction between agencies and community groups in these trainings can be the first step in developing a non-confrontational style of communication and dialogue. Participants will participate in exercises throughout the program to practice the negotiation, conflict resolution, and communication skills discussed in the course. Minimum course size is 8 participants.

Mardi Winder-Adams of Positive Communication Systems teaches this course. She has provided over 400 hours per year in mediation and conflict resolution services and training. She has over 100 hours of custom trainings presented on an annual basis to businesses, schools and private organizations.

Is there available background material?

  • Participants receive a handout of the presentation.
For general information contact Tina Conley by telephone at 703-603-0696 or via e-mail at conley.tina@epa.gov

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