Conflicts Between Stakeholders essays
To understand the difficulties in bringing about change, we have to realize that every situation provides costs and benefits in varying degrees to various people. To propose a change is to propose a reallocation in costs and benefits. Of course, that something is a cost or a benefit depends upon the perceptions of specific persons. Implementing change successfully requires getting stakeholders to agree that the reallocation of costs and benefits does not generate more conflicts for them than the status quo.
It is important to recognize that solving school problems depends on many different consenses:
The problem itself is a consensus of concern, resting on a consensus of perceptions.
These perceptions themselves require a consensus on criteria and to some extent a consensus on authority.
Selecting a change proposal depends upon a consensus of expectations. If the proposal is a technical, rather than a formal one, consensus on a specified task is at issue.
But a consensus of stakeholders is not sufficient. What is needed is a consensus of powerholders on resources, on willingness and ability to make the change.
But since change means a reallocating of costs and benefits, consensus on change must ultimately be founded on a consensus to bear new costs in order to enjoy new benefits.
In the next chapter we will look at the nature of controversy in education and apply the techniques developed in this chapter to better understand them. Secondly, we will use slogans productively to generate a normal model of school functioning that relates consensus to expectations, tasks and resources.
1. Underlying school problems are conflict situations. Problems in schooling are generally stated as abstract problems. Although this generates a consensus of concern, it also makes it difficult to determine whose concerns are involved. It may be possible to formulate abstract "solutions" for abstract problems, but they may not address the concrete realities that underlie the problems.
2. Problems are treated as situations that concern people. Proceeding from this perspective we can identify as pertinent items that remain hidden when only abstract problems are discussed. These items are: the situation, the stakeholders, their perceptions, their concerns, their proposals for change, the powerholders and the outcomes of the proposed change.
3. The fundamental consensus is consensus on authority. Failing this, practical knowledge is possible if common criteria are accepted. Pluralistic societies tend to share a broad but shallow consensus on authority.
4. Proposals for change are often empty formalisms: verbal solutions that cannot fail because they do not really indicate a course of action. Feasible proposals are always risky. A common but important strategem to recognize is the use of words like "lazy" or "irrational" which delegitimate concerns and interests.
1. "Teenage suicide is a problem." Is this statement a slogan? Explain your answer.
2. Are the expectations indicated by what people call school problems divisible or indivisible? How do you justify your answer?
3. What kind of evidence would it take to decide the merits of the "degeneracy-hypothesis"?
4. Write down a problem you have. Identify the situation which affects you.
Is the situation the problem or the fact that it affects you?
5. Most people would agree that there is a drug problem in our schools. Far fewer would agree that there is a smoking problem of equal or greater severity. Why is this?
6. Who are the stakeholders for the drug problem and the smoking problem? How many of them are in school?
7. The number of smoking related deaths each year is approximate 300,000. Drug related deaths number under 5,000. Should educators be more concerned with the drug problem than the smoking problem?
8. Write down a problem of yours. Use the so-what technique to get at intrinsic values.
9. Find terms which express a recognition of an interest for each of the following terms used to reject interest:
Conflicts Between Stakeholders Essay - Anti Essays
Conflicts Between Stakeholders essays - …
It might seem strange to ask if conflict is preferred, especially when all involve profess the most sincere desires to find an amicable solution. But conflict has many benefits, especially for the leadership of conflicting groups.
From time to time it becomes the educational fashion to talk of school reform as a matter of identifying "change agents." But change agents are stakeholders -- if only for the sake of a consultant's fee -- who are also powerholders, i.e. someone able to make the change and willing to do it. If no such people exist, a problem cannot be dealt with.
Every change proposal implicitly redefines who the potential stakeholders are: who pays the costs and who receives the benefits. This is why change is threatening; not simply because it is change. Our final question addresses this issue:
Stakeholder Conflicts Essay - 1073 Words | Bartleby
We can see that the odd-number solution-proposals are safe. They cannot fail. Logically they are denials of the problem. You can't possibly have the problem if the formal solution is achieved. We don't even need to test them out. But the even-numbered solution-proposals could well fail. They must pass the test of experience to determine their effectiveness.
Real, practical attempts at solving a problem are risky. They can fail. "Formal" solutions are dead certain. If you fail you haven't done it right. But they don't really tell you what to do, because they are merely reformulations of the problem situation in the form of a solution. Formal solutions do not specify tasks which would change the situation. They say little more than "Do something which will solve this problem!" Technical solutions specify tasks. "Do this," they indicate, "and it will cause the change you desire!"
An important function of formal solutions in a political environment is to keep technically knowledgeable people under the control of their appointed leaders. By issuing vague directives, "Motivate at-risk youth!", "Get kids to say no to drugs!" school people are burdened with a mission of unquestionable concern. But the very vagueness of the directive both evades commitment to provide resources and denies school people an objective standard for judging their efforts. The anxiety this conflict produces makes for stressed-out but docile school people.
The first reaction many people have when this distinction between formal and technical solutions is pointed out to them is to claim disbelief that anyone would use "formal" solutions as change proposals. But they are by far the most common. Just listen to anyone on a public platform talk about solutions. He or she cannot be technical, or the audience either won't understand or might think the proposal too risky. The following is a true story.:
A psychologist was sent to a state senate hearing as an expert witness for a local school district. He was to assure the funding agency heads that Special Education funds were being appropriately used. He began by discribing the intake process, the tests used and the assignment procedure. Right in the middle of a sentence, a commissioner interrupted him and said, "Look, Professor, cut out this technical jargon and tell us what is being done!" The psychologist thought a minute then said, "Appropriate tests are being used in an efficient placement process to remedy the problem!" The hearing board was satisfied.
Why do reform movements come and go and schools stay substantially the same? A key reason is that the stakeholders are often not the powerholders. The stakeholders, alone, are often unable to overcome the conflict. Identifying the powerholders is an important step in addressing schooling problems.