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Home > Resources for Trainers > MMTK > CPS

Cooperative Problem Solving

This module, developed by Search for Common Ground, consists of 15 separate units plus core materials intended for use with all units. This workshop is designed for use with groups who want to understand and practice the cooperative problem-solving model for managing conflict. The process focuses on encouraging mutual agreement and developing positive relationships.

Core materials

Overview: These materials are intended for use with all units. The Cooperative Problem Solving Guide is intended as the main handout for all units; the copyright statement included with the core materials applies to all units (separate versions are provided with individual units for trainers running only one or two units).

Download all "Core materials" as a zip file

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Unit 1: Introduction to the workshop

Unit overview: This unit serves as an introduction to the full module.

Duration: 35 minutes

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Unit 2: Introduction to Cooperative Problem Solving

Unit overview: An introduction to the concept of and issues involved in Cooperative Problem Solving.

Duration: 2 hours 15 minutes

Download the complete "Introduction to Cooperative Problem Solving" unit as a zip file

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Unit 3: Raising an issue

Unit overview: The way we raise an issue has a significant effect on the entire problem-solving process. By raising an issue in a constructive way, we set the stage early for resolving the conflict productively. The purpose of this unit is to give participants an opportunity to practice and explore this type of problem solving.

Duration: 30 minutes

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Unit 4: Listening

Unit overview: The message of this unit is that it is only by listening to understand that we create the possibility of then being understood.

Duration: 1 hour

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Unit 5: Discovering interests

Unit overview: The message of this unit that by understanding the difference between positions and interests, you greatly increase your ability to find common ground.

Duration: 1.5 hours

Download the complete "Discovering interests" unit as a zip file

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Unit 6: Working with perceptions

Unit overview: This unit deals with one of the "non-linear" dimensions of cooperative problem solving - perceptions. If we understand that each of us experiences the world differently, then we can use our different perceptions as sources of creativity and understanding, rather than as sources of dissent.

Duration: 50 minutes

Download the complete "Working with perceptions" unit as a zip file

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Unit 7: Respecting emotions

Unit overview: The message of this unit is that emotions are normal in a conflict situation, and they can contribute to problem solving if you learn how to manage them.

Duration: 35 minutes

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Unit 8: Generating options

Unit overview: The message of this unit is that once we have discovered the interests of the parties to a conflict, it is often useful to generate options before developing an agreement.

Duration: 35 minutes

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Unit 9: Using standards

Unit overview: The message of this unit is that there are certain techniques available that can make it easier to develop agreements. One of them is using standards.

Duration: 15 minutes

Download the complete "Using standards" unit as a zip file

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Unit 10: Being a peacemaker

Unit overview: It may appear that CPS is simply about carrying out a set of "steps," but that is not the case. It is primarily about developing a relationship of cooperation. This requires an attitude of respect for yourself and for the other person that is independent of your competence - or your success - in carrying out the steps in CPS. 

Duration: 40 minutes

Download the complete "Being a peacemaker" unit as a zip file

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Unit 11: BATNA

Unit overview: This unit explores the "Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement" or BATNA.

Duration: 20 minutes

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Unit 12: Choice

Unit overview: Cooperative Problem Solving is sometimes the best way to deal with a problem. However, sometimes other strategies are desirable. It is possible to assess a situation and choose an appropriate approach.

Duration: 1 hour

Download the complete "Choice" unit as a zip file

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Unit 13: BHAP

Unit overview: This "Back Home Action Planning" unit offers an opportunity for individuals to plan how they will apply their new CPS skills in their back-home environment.

Duration: 40 minutes

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Unit 14: Workshop evaluation

Unit overview: This provides an opportunity for the workshop leaders to learn how well the workshop was received, and to identify areas for improvement.

Duration: 15 minutes

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Unit 15: Workshop close

Unit overview: This unit closes the workshop with certificates of attendance.

Duration: 15 minutes

Download the complete "Workshop close" unit as a zip file

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Complete module (zipped)

The whole Cooperative Problem Solving module may be downloaded as a single zip file.

Copyright information

All MMTK materials are released under a Creative Commons license which allows their free use and distribution for non-commercial use. However, the exact provisions of the license vary from module to module - while most modules permit modification of the materials, a few do not. The copyright statement included with each module sets out the specific provisions which apply to that module.

 

 
 
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