The positive response to Olav Ofstad's book 'Conflict Management in International Peace Operations' see A Book For Clients, prompted him to follow up with 'Conflict Management in International Operations. A Field guide' which was published as part of Routledge's series ' Security and Conflict Management' in January 2015, see Routlege's flier
While the book's target group is international personnel and training institutions, anyone interested in expanding their perspectives and knowledge of conflict management should benefit from reading it. Written in a clear, to the point language, the book aims at giving the reader a broad understanding of conflict management, spanning from cultural understanding and conflict related communication to the different challenges of third party intervention. Personal conflicts are discussed, as are conflicts between organizations and local actors as well as security implications.
Some of the tools presented are not common in conflict literature. The chapter ‘Influence: psychology versus traditional approaches’ stands out in this context, transforming research results from social psychology into practical tools for peace.
Peacebuilding is an essential part of the book. Apart from providing the reader with a broad understanding of the topic, it offers advice on a wide range of challenges, while also discussing shortcomings and need for improvement of some of today’s peacebuilding practices.
The book’s chapters are:
1.What you should know about conflict
2.Preparing for missions
3.Establishing yourself in the field
5.Influence: psychology versus traditional approaches
7.When you or your agency becomes party to a conflict
Reviews and statements
'This very useful book will appeal to the tens of thousands of people worldwide who are involved in the various peace missions in conflict-affected areas. It draws on a mixture of academic and policy wisdom, and personal experience. It provides a step by step guide for the many people involved, and especially newly entering such missions and covers a comprehensive range of issues they may face': Dr. Oliver Richmond, Professor of International Relations, Peace & Conflict Studies, Manchester University
'Olav Ofstad’s practical field guide to conflict management and peacebuilding is a MUST READ for practitioners, planners and trainers involved in the complex business of international peace missions. The book distils civil-military lessons from specific missions and provides useful guidance for implementation. I would have been more effective had this field guide been in my kit bag during my time in Cambodia, Timor-Leste and Libya.':
Major General Michael G. Smith (Ret), Asia-Pacific College of Diplomacy, Australian National University.
'Olav Ofstad’s well-structured field guide covers various topics ranging from conflict theory and pre-deployment mission preparation to peacebuilding engagement. In doing so, Ofstad critically reflects the peacebuilder’s involvement in conflict. Highly relevant for practice and theoretically solid, this book is a much-needed bridge between academia and conflict management on the ground.
Olav Ofstad has written a comprehensive field guide for both newcomers and experienced peacebuilding staff alike. We highly recommend this book especially for consultants with monitoring and evaluation assignments: It can serve as a guide for conflict- sensitive project management.':
Austrian Study Centre for Peace and Conflict Resolution (ASPR)
'If you already are an experienced international missions operator, you want to become one, or you just want to enhance your knowledge of how field missions operate, I highly recommend this book. Bring it with you in into the field and use it.'
Colonel Øyvind Dammen (Ret), Dammen Consultants Norway /DCN www.facebook.com/dilalogue4peace
For a comprehensive review by Mr. Dammen, see http://www.humiliationstudies.org/news/?p=8034
'Ofstad delivers an invaluable guide to anyone embarking on a field task in the field of peace building. He also, however, offers much needed insights and perspectives on field realities that are of critical importance to policy makers. Thereby, in combining theoretical insights with field perspectives, Ofstad offers a much-needed bridge between theory and practice that provides an opportunity for all of us working in the field of peace building to better our mutual peace building efforts.
I strongly recommend this book to practitioners and policy makers alike'.
Carina Lamont, PhD Candidate Kent University,Public International Law
For a full review by Carina Lamont, see LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/conflict-management-international-missions-field-guide-olav-ofstad
A ‘pracademic jewel’
Over the past three decades, scholars and policymakers have debated the growing gap between theory and practice (George, 1993; Hill & Beshoff, 1994; Nincic & Lepgold, 2000). On one side, practitioners denounce academics for being too abstract and autistic, lost in self-serving empirical jargon and unable to provide timely advice to policymakers who face rapidly changing conditions on the ground. On the other, scholars criticize the other camp for being unsystematic, prone to formulating inapt policy recommendations based on intuition and simplistic generalizations. This book represents one of the most valuable “pracademic” contributions to date, based on the author's practical experience from various field missions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved)
Dr. Siniša Vuković, Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology, Vol 23 (1), Feb 2017, 101-102 See http://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fpac0000230
For an interview about the book, see http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/books/The-practitioners-guide-on-conflict-management/articleshow/46635097.cms
The book is at all times available from Routledge. For the most part one can also get it from Amazon, in addition to Apple Ibook and other leading web stores.