Spring 2023 - REM 643 G100

Environmental Conflict and Dispute Resolution (5)

Class Number: 2779

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Jan 4 – Apr 11, 2023: Wed, Fri, 1:30–3:20 p.m.



This course examines theoretical aspects of conflict and dispute resolution in natural resource management settings and is designed to assist students in understanding the nature of environmental conflict and the role of environmental dispute resolution (EDR) techniques. Equivalent Courses: MRM660 MRM662


Negotiation and mediation have become an essential part of resource and environmental management. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the theory and techniques of planning, public engagement, negotiation and mediation processes. The course begins with a review of negotiation theory within the context of differing world views about the role of individuals and groups in decision-making in democratic societies. This is followed by a review of techniques for the design and operation of public engagement and stakeholder decision-making processes. Case studies and negotiation simulation sessions are used to illustrate key concepts. The course is based in part on the theories and approaches taught at the Harvard Negotiation Program, including Harvard Negotiation Program simulation exercises for environmental dispute resolution. After completion of the course, students will have the skills required to design, manage, facilitate, and participate in public engagement and stakeholder negotiation and decision-making processes, including major public policy initiatives by different levels of government as well as international negotiation processes, such as the Framework Convention on Climate Change.


After completing this course students will be able to:

  1. understand strengths and weaknesses of different types of planning processes
  2. understand strengths and weaknesses of different types of public participation models
  3. design a planning process
  4. prepare terms of reference
  5. complete a conflict assessment analysis
  6. complete a negotiation preparation document
  7. facilitate a stakeholder process and meetings
  8. participate effectively as a stakeholder in negotiation
  9. prepare and implement a stakeholder planning agreement
  10. evaluate planning and stakeholder processes
  11. negotiate effectively
  12. develop and evaluate options for achieving consensus agreements



Students will be graded on their simulated negotiations and a modest-sized term paper. The full evaluation requirements will be “negotiated” with the instructor in the first or second class.



Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Graduate Studies Notes:

Important dates and deadlines for graduate students are found here: http://www.sfu.ca/dean-gradstudies/current/important_dates/guidelines.html. The deadline to drop a course with a 100% refund is the end of week 2. The deadline to drop with no notation on your transcript is the end of week 3.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html