Attitude-Based Conflict Management for Resolving Disputes over Water Quality of the Seymareh River in Iran

Document Type: Article


1 Department of Architecture, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Systems Design Engineering, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

3 Department of Civil Engineering, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada


A strategic negotiation methodology for managing complex water-related conflicts is presented in order to consider the decision makers' attitudes. The developed approach systematically exploits the Graph Model for Conflict Resolution (GMCR) as an analytical and practical technique, and helps decision makers find the most beneficial outcomes for negotiating their disputes, assuming the competing needs, wants, and attitudes of decision makers. A real case study of a water-related dispute in Iran is used to demonstrate the implementation of the developed methodology and to emphasize the significance of decision makers' attitudes in identifying feasible negotiation outcomes for resolving complex disputes. In fact, the developed attitude-oriented methodology proposes an innovative engineering approach to help stakeholders address a wide range of conflicts, especially in complex water disputes in developing countries where human factors such as attitude play a significant role. The research can also help decision makers with the shortcomings of conventional decision making systems, such as original GMCR, through incorporating attitudes into conflict resolution tools in order to better clarify needs and interests, obtain equilibrium results, and generate more equitable solutions


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