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Title: Integration system : a problem-solving framework for seeking stability in complex conflictual situations
Author: Adegoke, Emmanuel Oluwayemi
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 1989
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The thesis examines some of the methodologies used for conflict study and analysis; it reviews Operational Research based approaches and methodologies from other areas of study that have been, and are still being used for the study and analysis of conflict situations in complex systems. The thesis argues against the prevalent use of single methodologies for such systems, and calls for the adoption of approaches that allows the use of multiple methodologies, which would place the emphasis on the "problem" rather than on any particular approach or methodology. The nature, causes and effects, ecology of conflict, and the concept of issue relevance and irrelevance are examined as well as the role of perceptions. The factors determining thedevelopment, level and scope of conflicts are reviewed with the aim of ascertaining their importance to conflict outcomes andwhen meaningful intervention could be made during conflict situations. Various outcomes of conflict, primarily management, dissolution, and resolution are discussed and their relative strengths and weaknesses as strategies for handling conflicts. Case studies are used to examine and support arguments about how different conflict outcomes arise and some proposals are made for the study of alternative futures. It is argued that undesired conflicts could be reduced or prevented in complex interaction systems through the deliberate design and incorporation, into such systems, of structures and mechanisms that will serve as integration systems. These integration systems involve all the parties in an interaction system and are intended to reconcile views, clarify positions, inform the parties about each other and assist in the formulation of joint responses to negative internal and external stimuli. An outline structure of an integration system is given and how it could be developed in a system. Many methodologies and approaches are based on the premise of a "prima facie" existence of a conflict; a tool is suggested in the thesis that will assist analysts, observers, or any interested party to monitor the relationship in an interaction system. This tool concerns what I have called the Y-points and Y-diagrams. The Y-concepts are based on the notion that there are periods in an interaction when a decision can be consciously taken to escalate or de-escalate a situation. The approach advocated in the thesis is based on two assumptions: the first is that the parties prefer a "normal" relationship to a conflictual one, the second is that the parties in a conflict would prefer the resolution of a conflict and its attendant stability to an unending management of the situation. Consequently, the main thrust of the arguments in the thesis is on conflict resolution and the design of stability into complex interaction systems.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Operations Research