Peter T. Coleman

Executive Director

Dr. Peter T. Coleman is Professor of Psychology and Education at Columbia University where he holds a joint-appointment at Teachers College and The Earth Institute. Dr. Coleman directs the Morton Deutsch International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution (MD-ICCCR), is founding director of the Institute for Psychological Science and Practice (IPSP), and is executive director of Columbia University’s Advanced Consortium on Cooperation, Conflict, and Complexity (AC4).

Dr. Coleman is a renowned expert on constructive conflict resolution and sustainable peace. His current research focuses on conflict intelligence and systemic wisdom as meta-competencies for navigating conflict constructively across all levels (from families to companies to communities to nations), and includes projects on adaptive negotiation and mediation dynamics, cross-cultural adaptivity, optimality dynamics in conflict, justice and polarization, multicultural conflict, intractable conflict, and sustainable peace.

In 2003, Dr. Coleman became the first recipient of the Early Career Award from the American Psychological Association (APA), Division 48: Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict, and Violence, and in 2015 was awarded the Morton Deutsch Conflict Resolution Award by APA and a Marie Curie Fellowship from The European Union. In 2018, Dr. Coleman was awarded the Peace Award from Meaningful World, in celebration of their 30th anniversary and the UN’s International Day of Peace. Dr. Coleman edits the award-winning Handbook of Conflict Resolution: Theory and Practice (2000, 2006, 2014) and his other books include The Five Percent: Finding Solutions to Seemingly Impossible Conflicts (2011); Conflict, Justice, and Interdependence: The Legacy of Morton Deutsch (2011), Psychological Components of Sustainable Peace (2012), and Attracted to Conflict: Dynamic Foundations of Destructive Social Relations (2013). His last book, Making Conflict Work: Navigating Disagreement Up and Down Your Organization (2014), won the 2016 Outstanding Book Award from The International Association of Conflict Management. He is currently work on a book with Columbia University Press that will be released in 2020 on breaking through the intractable polarization plaguing the U.S. and other liberal democracies across the globe, titled, The Way Out: How to Overcome Toxic Polarization in Politics and in Life.

Dr. Coleman has also authored well over 100 articles and chapters, is a member of the United Nations Mediation Support Unit’s Academic Advisory Council, is a founding board member of the Gbowee Peace Foundation USA, and is a New York State certified mediator and experienced consultant. In 2017, he received the International Association of Conflict Management 2017 Best Conference Theoretical Paper Award for his article Conflict Intelligence and Systemic Wisdom: Meta-competencies for Engaging Difference in a Complex, Dynamic World, and in 2018 The Emerald Literati Award for the paper Adaptive mediation: An evidence-based contingency approach to mediating conflict. Dr. Coleman also founded and edits the MD-ICCCR Science-Practice Blog, the WKCR (89.9 FM) monthly radio program Peace and Conflict at Columbia: Conversations at the Leading Edge, and is a frequent blogger on Huffington Post and Psychology Today. Dr. Coleman’s work has also been featured in media outlets such as The New York Times, The Guardian, The Chicago Tribute, Nature, Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Wired, This American Life, Time Magazine, Fox Business, CBS, Fast Company, Chicago Public Radio, and various international outlets.