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JesusCollege: Managing conflict and polarization in the workplace and beyond

We all form groups. Sometimes they help us, other times they stimulate harmful or even violent polarization. Using expertise from business, behavioral science, and politics, we explore these ‘groupish’ instincts, while providing skills to bridge divides.

Managing conflict and polarization in the workplace and beyond
6 weeks
2–4 hours per week
Progress at your own speed
Optional upgrade available

There is one session available:

After a course session ends, it will be archivedOpens in a new tab.
Starts Dec 11

About this course

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Groups and divides appear across our lives: at home, at work, and at play. These divides can help us, individually, collectively and as a society - driving competition, progress, and innovation. But they often drive us apart in ways that are unhelpful, harmful, and in extreme cases, violent. But are they inevitable? Do they serve a purpose? Can they help us? What can we do when divides do more harm than good? What can we do when divisions threaten to break down society?

Polarization can impact every part of life at work, home, and wider society. Impairing judgements, reducing profits and lowering productivity. This course, delivered by Jesus College in the University of Cambridge, draws on expertise from renowned speakers in business, behavioral science, and politics to explore the triggers of division that activate these ‘groupish’ instincts, and how they can lead to problematic polarization.

Whether you’re a working professional or a community leader, this course will help you understand why and how polarization happens. Critically, it will give you the skills to bridge those divides when they occur. It will help you to understand the often-hostile consequences of our natural human instincts to form groups. You’ll leave understanding your role in this phenomenon, and with a grasp of what you can do to master your own behavior and how you can guide others to find common ground.

At a glance

  • Language: English
  • Video Transcript: English
  • Associated skills: Community Leadership, Innovation, Polarization, Behavioral Science

What you'll learn

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By completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain why we polarize creating ingroups and outgroups
  • Explain how this conflict extends to other aspects of our lives and why it matters
  • Understand what technology may/may not be doing to make polarization worse
  • Develop skills to critically assess complex situations and lead groups to bridge divides
  • Comprehend you too play a role in polarization, often subconsciously
  • Become confident in healing/handling divisions in the workplace, at home, and beyond.

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