E. van de Vliert
C.K.W. de Dreu
- Optimizing performance by stimulating conflict
- The International Journal of Conflict Management
- Volume | Issue number
- 5 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
To enhance the quality of group decision making, to promote affective acceptance of decisions by all participants involved, or to increase joint outcomes, a principal party or a third party may stimulate social conflict. We argue that when conflict focuses on identity issues, when tension level is high, and when disputants' goals are negatively interdependent, conflict stimulation generally decreases joint performance. However, conflict stimulation enhances performance when conflict focuses on task issues, when tension level is low, and when disputants' goals are positively interdependent. We conclude by arguing that conflict may be stimulated either by creating or extending conflict issues, or by promoting contentious conflict behaviors.
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