John Burton

595 Words3 Pages
In the last seventy-five years, there have been three major paradigm shifts in the field of conflict resolution. John Burton's paper focuses mainly on the first two. The first major shift was from dispute resolution to conflict resolution with a focus on interpersonal conflict. The second was from state politics to identity politics. Burton advocates the use of conflict prevention over dispute resolution. Historically nations and the institutions within those nations are set up as power oriented systems. An oriented power system is where the primary focus is to attain power by all means necessary, regardless of the consequences. Within structural realism is offensive realism, which encourages states to maximize their share of world power and ultimately pursue hegemony. Within this framework, history has shown that the resolutions or desired outcomes always promote the interests of the…show more content…
John Burton builds on Maslow's human needs theories Human needs cannot be suppressed. Maslow's human needs theory is a pyramid of the needs of humans starting with the most basic, like food and shelter to self-actualization, the need for people to have a purpose in life. As one achieves one level of needs as a human they seek for the next level, and so on. Burton takes this further by stating that all human's of inherent needs that need to be fulfilled at all points in the hierarchy of needs. These needs are identity, recognition, and security. Security meaning the security of the preceding needs as one fulfills their other needs. Burton explains that the only way to resolve social, behavioral problems that lead to specific conflicts is not to suppress them nor to settle them by coercion. The behavioral needs theory is the foundation of his decision-making
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