Sprzeczność interesów jako źródło konfliktów


  • Janusz Reykowski członek korespondent PAN, Instytut Psychologii PAN, Warszawa

Słowa kluczowe:

interests, conflict, self-esteem, interdependence, dual concern model, normative regulations, competition, democratic capitalism, deliberation


According to the Realistic Conflict Theory opposing claims to scarce resources such as wealth, prestige, and power, that is opposed interests, generate antagonisms and initiate conflicts with potentially destructive consequences. It can be argued that consequences of the opposed interests may differ depending on people’s conceptions of their interests, their interpretation of the conflict situation, and the strategies they adopt in dealing with the situation. The interests that are interpreted in utilitarian terms are more likely to be dealt with peacefully then interests interpreted in terms of self-esteem because, in many instances, the desire for protection and enhancement of the self-esteem instigates the self-other comparisons and a tendency to trump the opposite side. Dynamics of conflict depends on people’s cognitive construal of the conflict situations. The construal can be described in terms of the “Dual Concern” Model that implies that in conflicts people might take into consideration their own as well as the other party interests. Definition of the situation, degree of trust in the other party, and the strength of personal motivation may influence the degree of concern. In conflict situations, there is a tendency to deal with the opposition by means of the direct physical force. However, societies have developed various normative regulations that are meant to control conflicts and restrict the use of physical force. There are also institutional arrangements that help in transformation the physical fights for scarce resources into economic and political competition (and other forms of competition, as well). The most advanced system of such institutional arrangements is democratic capitalism. Nevertheless, democratic capitalism has not eliminated indirect forms of oppression and power relations as means of solving conflicts for scarce resources. One may argue that people have capability to deal with conflict of interests by means of more advanced strategies consisting in well-elaborated forms of dialog and deliberative procedures. Broader application of these forms would require the development of specific institutions.