Compassionate Courage: A Conflict Intervention Approach for Systemic Change

  • Part 1
     March 15, 2022
     8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
  • Part 2
     March 17, 2022
     8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
  • Office Hours
     March 16, 2022
     9:00 AM - 10:00 AM
  • Office Hours
     March 18, 2022
     9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Identity-based conflicts are not only on the rise, but they are also causing deep divisions in society. Whether politics, race, religion, gender, sexuality, class, nationality, or immigration status, we seem to engage with one another as complete opposites. Divisions lead us to highlight our differences with the attitude that someone different from us must be ridiculed, slandered, and not allowed to exist. Yes, cancel culture is the latest trend that adds to divisiveness. When families, communities, institutions, and a nation are so divided, it leads to the kind of fragmentation that goes against the very ethos of us as interconnected humans on this planet. Compassionate Courage is a conflict intervention approach designed to encourage and facilitate persons across the divide to connect, listen, and communicate. The primary thrust of this approach is that if we can analyze a conflict accurately, the intervention strategies become apparent. Further, if the root of the problem is in the system, those who hold power need to be involved in resolving the conflict. Systemic change is then not just possible but even inevitable. For more details, visit the Compassionate Courage website.

This workshop is co-sponsored and organized by Compassionate Courage & the Posner Center for International Development.

This image includes the logo for Compassionate Courage, with two interlocking puzzle pieces each with the letter "C" in the center. The Posner Center Logo is a circle made up of intertwined blue and brown rounded diamond shapes

Session Details

Participants will use conflict analysis tools in these two 2-hour sessions to locate the root causes of conflicts and identify the conflict parties who need to be brought to the negotiating table. Part of the analysis requires exploring the personal challenges to being more compassionate and courageous when encountering hate and discrimination in our immediate surroundings. Through storytelling, a Compassionate Courage tool, participants will work on their ability to go past the need to be reactionary by staying curious, asking questions, and overcoming the need to judge. Finally, the session will help participants recognize how greater accountability from all will lead to systemic change. Members of the Compassionate Courage Team will participate in the small group conversations. 

Part 1: March 15th | 8:00am-10:00am MST 

Part 2: March 17th | 8:00am-10:00am MST 

Optional Office Hours: March 16th and 18th | 8:00am-9:00am MST


Who should participate?
This workshop is limited to the first 15 participants to register. You should be a mid-level leader working on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (JEDI) issues.


photo of Pushpa Iyer



Dr. Pushpa Iyer
Dr. Pushpa Iyer is an activist, scholar, and practitioner in conflict resolution, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Currently, she is an associate professor at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (MIIS) in Monterey, California. Her current activism is done through programs designed to fight racial inequity, discrimination, and violence in higher education institutions and beyond. She is also the Founder Director of the Center for Conflict Studies at MIIS and Compassionate Courage, an initiative designed to ensure systemic change and healing divisions, one community at a time. You can read more about her here.


To ensure everyone who wants to is able to participate, we are using a sliding scale model. Please determine how much you should pay using the below categories, and consider donating to support additional programming. To further support this work, please contact our Executive Director or make a donation here.

The Posner Center for International Development is committed to accessibility and inclusion for all people. To request additional accommodations or for questions about accessibility, please contact Lauren Andraski at  or 720-515-9071.

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Zoom link will be provided prior to the meeting.