Canadian psychologists have found that when people are primed with religious concepts they behave in more altruistic ways
Secular humanists need not fear--the same results were produced when participants were instead primed with concepts relating to civic responsibility. Researchers used word games to surreptitiously introduce these concepts to their subjects. Interestingly enough, exit interviews revealed that participants were unaware that they had been primed.
What I find fascinating about the study is the extent to which human behavior can be so readily influenced. And it certainly raises intriguing possibilities for the mediator's opening statement, already important for the extent to which it can shape the negotiations to follow, as attorney-mediator Christopher Annunziata discussed recently at CKA Mediation & Arbitration Blog
. All the more reason for mediators to carefully consider the words they choose to frame the conversation.
(Via Boing Boing
Diane Levin, J.D., is a mediator, dispute resolution trainer, negotiation coach, writer, and lawyer based in Marblehead, Massachusetts, who has instructed people from around the world in the art of talking it out. Since 1995 she has helped clients resolve disputes involving tort, employment, business, estate, family, and real property issues, and serves on numerous mediation panels, including the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Training and coaching are an enduring passion -- she has taught thousands of people to resolve conflict, negotiate better, or become mediators -- from Croatian judges to Fortune 500 executives.
A geek at heart, Levin consults on web design and social media to professionals. She blogs about ADR at the intersection of law, science, and popular culture at the award-winning MediationChannel.com, regarded as one of the world's top ADR blogs. She also tracks and catalogues ADR blogs world-wide at ADRblogs.com, where she has created a community for bloggers writing about constructive ways to resolve disputes.
web site: http://dianelevin.com