January Term 2019 Workshop on Dignity

Healing and Reconciling Relationships in Conflict: a Dignity Approach

Donna Hicks photoLed by Donna Hicks, PhD

Intensive 4-day Workshop
Tuesday, January 22 to Friday, January 25, 2019
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday: 9:00 am-1:00 pm and 2:00-5:00 pm

Friday: 9:00 am-12:30 pm and 2:00-5:00 pm

This multiday intensive workshop will examine a hidden force within us so powerful that it can affect the way we feel about ourselves, our relationships, and the world around us. That force is our common human yearning to be treated with dignity. It underlies every human interaction, at all levels, all of the time. It is the unspoken and often unconscious message that we send to one another regardless of the nature of the relationship. The workshop will introduce students to the Dignity Model. Drawing on decades of research and practice in conflict transformation around the globe, it will explain what dignity is (it is different from respect), the Ten Elements of Dignity (ways to honor dignity), the Ten Temptations to Violate Dignity (ways our evolutionary legacy sets us up to violate our own dignity), the role it plays in resolving conflict, and how to integrate dignity consciousness into leadership practice.

The workshop will place emphasis on religious and spiritual communities, demonstrating the many ways dignity can enhance compassionate leadership as well as spiritual growth and development. It will also address how to identify conflicts within and among religious communities that have their roots in unaddressed dignity violations. It will show how to use the skills and tools of the Dignity Model to repair broken relationships and to promote healing and reconciliation. The workshop will employ a variety of teaching modalities: lecture, small group work, experiential learning, and storytelling.

Workshop Objectives

Participants will gain a working knowledge of:

  1. The difference between dignity and respect
  2. The Ten Elements of Dignity
  3. The Ten Temptations to Violate Dignity
  4. The impact of violations to dignity and dignity honoring
  5. Dignity leadership skills and tools
  6. How to resolve conflict with dignity
  7. How to heal from dignity violations
  8. How to promote a culture of dignity in an organization and within and among communities.

Required Reading Before the Workshop

All participants are required to read the two books in below in their entirety prior to the workshop. This is vital both for the individual participant and out of consideration for fellow participants. (Apply to the workshop only if you are able to do this advance reading).

  • Read first: Hicks, Donna (2011). Dignity: Its Essential Role in Resolving Conflict. Yale University Press. All participants must read the book in its entirety prior to the start of the workshop. It is vital that participants complete the reading in advance both for themselves and out of consideration for their fellow participants.
  • Read second: Hicks, Donna (2018). Leading with Dignity: How to Create a Culture that Brings Out the Best in People. Yale University Press.

Required Reading During the Workshop

  • Excerpts from Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu (2016). The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World. Avery.
  • Additional brief readings by religious leaders and conflict transformation practitioners may be assigned, TBA.

Application and Enrollment

Open to current Harvard University students and fellows free of charge. If space permits, open to Harvard University alumni and the public with an RPP administrative fee of $250. Contact rpp@hds.harvard.edu if you have concerns about the fee or questions about the workshop. The workshop does not provide course credit.

Space is limited. Extended application deadline: Wednesday, November 28. Click to apply.