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  • Roundtable Breakfast - How Our Values Shape Our Practice

Roundtable Breakfast - How Our Values Shape Our Practice

  • Thursday, July 07, 2011
  • 8:00 AM - 9:59 AM
  • John Jay College of Criminal Justice: 899 Tenth Avenue (at West 59th Street), Room 630, NYC


  • The event is free and open to anyone interested in the topic. Please register in order to attend.

Registration is closed

The Association for Conflict Resolution
of Greater New York


The CUNY Dispute Resolution Consortium
at John Jay College

Monthly NYC-DR Roundtable Breakfast
Rachel M. Goldberg, Ph.D.



How Our Values Shape Our Practice: Exploding the Myth of Neutrality and What That Means to You


 How do our values shape our practices? Based on a multi-year research project on whether and how practitioner’s values shape their practice behavior, Dr. Goldberg will show that our values do shape our practices (we are not neutral) and discuss risks associated with false neutrality. Dr. Goldberg found strong evidence that different values are associated with different patterns of practice. She used semi-structured interviews with 43 top environmental and intercultural practitioners and used narrative and metaphor analysis to reveal their underlying values-of-practice. The patterns of correlations were summarized into a series of continuums of values across which practice differed. Dr. Goldberg has complied this into a ‘map’ of the practice world, bounded by these continuums. She further collected data on how practitioners do and do not use power and found strong correlations between the values revealed and how we practice, specifically how we give and take power. Those correlations were refined into a series of ‘profiles’ which represent major differences among practitioners in terms of value of practice and their associated approaches.


Audience members will discuss the implications of these findings for the field, learn about the major values-of-practice defining the field, and for those who can stay beyond 9:30, do a short exercise identifying their own values ‘profile’, and discuss how it may impact their work. 


Dr. Goldberg was originally trained as a mediator at Oberlin College in 1983, and has been active in the field for 25 years. Her work and training background include: individual, organizational and multi-party interventions; and work around controversial issues like pro-life/pro-choice activism, police accountability, and Native American land claim conflict. She is a long time specialist and trainer in cross-cultural and diversity work, particularly at the group and community level. Her research includes work on incipient and active gang related activities, how worldview and values affect practice, identity effects on data collection, best practices in environmental and inter-cultural conflict resolution, and she is now focusing on designing and providing a new model, Wisdom Conflict Resolution, which is engages cognitive, emotional, somatic, and spiritual intelligence in classic conflict resolution practice.


During her tenure in the field she jointly founded one mediation center, and coordinated two. She was also senior staff for the National Association for Mediation in Education (NAME, now CRENET/ACR) and was a trainer for the Alternatives to Violence Project in maximum-security correctional facilities.  She is also certified to do NY State Lemon Law Arbitration and Matrimonial Fee Dispute Arbitration.

          She is currently an Assistant Professor in Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution at Salisbury University, in Salisbury, MD. She has also taught at Syracuse University and Le Moyne College. Contact her at her consulting business RMG Resilience, at







Association for Conflict Resolution - Greater New York Chapter


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