UNITAR Hosts Columbia Law School Series: Leadership and Conflict Resolution

UNITAR hosts course of Columbia Law School Series

14 November 2018, New York, USA - The United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), in collaboration with Columbia Law School and the Permanent Mission of Sweden to the United Nations, hosted the final lecture of the Columbia Law School Lecture Series on “Leadership and Conflict Resolution: Leading Self and Leading Others” at the United Nations Headquarter. This lecture series has been sponsored by the Permanent Mission of Sweden as a part of the programme “Levelling the Playing Field to support the Least Developed Countries’ (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States’ (SIDS) Diplomats.”

UNITAR Hosts Leadership and Conflict Resolution WorkshopUNITAR New York Head of Office, Mr. Marco Suazo opened the session by welcoming the participants of the training session. He then introduced the speakers: Professor Alexandra Carter, Director of the Mediation Clinic, Columbia Law School; Professor Shawn Watts, Associate Director of the Mediation Clinic, Columbia Law School; and students of Columbia Law School: Ms. Lydia Cash, Ms. Kate Lee, Ms. Bojun Xu, Mr. Anand Srivastava, and Ms. Maryam Najam.

Mr. Suazo commended the spirit of the Columbia Law School Lecture Series, and recapitulated the necessity of facilitating an inclusive approach to partnerships, with an emphasis on partnerships forged between the public sector and the private sector through joint efforts in conflict resolution.

Upon welcoming diplomats and delegates to the interactive training, Professor Alexandra Carter and Professor Shawn Watts promptly and briefly began speaking on understanding the leadership learning process. They followed this with an interactive exercise elucidating a discussion on personal leadership and its inherent commitments and values, as well as a de-brief to prepare participants for the day. The workshop focused on enhancing leadership capacities at the intrapersonal (self) and interpersonal levels. The morning session focused on understanding and navigating the “self” as an instrument of impact and change. This involved learning about effective communication with focus on self-awareness and using self-reflection as a tool for effective communication. The afternoon session built on the morning session and focused on understanding leadership competencies in interpersonal interactions. This involved learning about communication techniques in feedback, reframing, and other concepts. The session will also focus on biases and argument styles of different cultures. The workshop was interactive and participants were highly engaging.

Professor Carter and Professor Watts then proceeded to discuss self-awareness and it's relation to leadership styles, facilitating the conversation with intermittent videos and discussions that required interactive participation from the attendees. Participants worked to foster a deepened conception of Internal and External Self-awareness, with a focus on expanding an understanding of their personal values, passions, and aspirations, as well as how others see view them, before breaking for coffee. 

UNITAR Hosts leadership workshop Professor Carter and Professor Watts resumed the training, leading delegates and participants through a nuanced overview of Cultural Intelligence and Leadership Styles across Cultures. This was then promptly followed by an in depth synergistic decision-making exercise and exercise de-brief that elaborated on concepts of Cultural Intelligence and Leadership Styles across Cultures. Delegates and participants were then briefed on feedback techniques, reflecting on important elements of feedback and Pendleton’s Model (Chowdhury and Kalu 2004).

At the completion of the training, Mr. Marco Suazo, Professor Alexandra Carter, and Professor Shawn Watts thanked delegates for attending, and remarked on the continued success of the Columbia Law School Lecture Series, with its next anticipated reiteration returning in the Spring.


Picture 1: an overview of the participants (photo credit: UNITAR New York Office) 

Picture 2: opening remarks (Photo credit: UNITAR New York Office) 

Picture 3 (right): participants taking notes (photo credit: UNITAR New York Office) 

Picture 4 (left): speakers (photo credit: UNITAR New York Office)