The co-author of "Getting To Yes" has died.
Roger Fisher, a Havard law professor, made a major contribution to peace-making with this ground breaking book and the changes it generated in conflict resolution practices.
Professor Fisher's impact on public affairs, both in the United States and abroad, was significant. "Peace is not a piece of paper," he told his classes, "but a way of dealing with conflict when it arises."
In my mind, his biggest contribution was the notion that mutual gain could be found and that it was the only basis for a sustainable peace.
The New York Times obituary contains a paragraph that speaks volumes about the man:
"It did not matter to Professor Fisher whether the warring parties reached out to him or not; he would assume they needed his help. 'Most of the time he was not invited. He would invite himself," Elliot Fisher (son) said.
Fisher had his hand in a lot of difficult negotiations, including the hostage crisis at the Japanese Embassy in Lima, Peru; the U.S./Soviet Summit between Reagan and Gorbachev; the peace agreement signed at Camp David between Egypt and Israel; and the end of apartheid in South Africa.
Thank you Roger Fisher for your timeless contribution to civil society. Rest in peace.
© Patrick O’Neill 2012. All rights reserved.