Solving the impossible

May 31st, 2011

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld used to say that the best solution to an intractable problem, was to create a bigger problem. That didn't work out very well for him, or the Country. In fact, fully 5 percent of all conflicts end in a stalemate - not just the big ones that we read about every day, but also disputes and arguments in our everyday lives. How do we get beyond this, or do we? Dr. Peter Coleman of Columbia University, in his new work The Five Percent: Finding Solutions to Seemingly Impossible Conflicts argues that there are very real ways to break through even some of the most heated and critical issues of the day. My conversation with Dr. Peter T. Coleman: