Conflict: The definition, functions, dysfunctions and benefits

Conflict may be defined as "sharp disagreement or opposition, as of interests, ideas, etc and includes the perceived divergence of interest, or a belief that parties' current aspirations cannot be achieved simultaneously".

It is a potential consequence of interdependent relationships and is therefore quite normal in our everyday lives. It can result from divergent needs of the partiesor from misperceptions and misunderstandings. It is commonly regarded as destructive and to be avoided, but it is also constructive. When you think about it democracy could not work without conflict.

Read more about conflict in our newsletter.