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New conflict resolution book, Embodied Conflict: the neural basis of conflict and communication

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    Tim Allen Hicks

    I’m pleased to announce the publication of my new book, Embodied Conflict: the neural basis of conflict and communication.

    Among early reviews:

    “Practical, accessible, easy to read, and yet deeply rooted in science, Tim Hicks has written an extremely valuable book for conflict specialists or for anyone struggling to understand the conflicts they face in life. Starting from the premise that ‘an understanding of the neural workings of the brain’ will help us to better understand and intervene in conflict, Hicks walks us carefully through an understanding of essential concepts of neural science and then applies these both broadly and specifically to how we can understand what happens in conflict and how we can use this understanding in very practical ways. This is a very valuable addition to our understanding of conflict.” Bernie Mayer, conflict specialist and author

    “Embodied Conflict: The Neural Basis of Conflict and Communication by Tim Hicks is a well-written and thoroughly researched explanation of this new and vital area of thought for mediators and dispute resolution professionals, the best compilation of this knowledge base that I have seen.” Jim Melamed, mediator and CEO of

    “Addressing one of the important issues of our times, Tim Hicks provides a clear and readable analysis of the scientific basis of human conflict. At a basic level, he explains the mind’s embodied basis in the neurobiology of personal development. At the same time, he also recognizes the psychological reality of conflict. We must realize that what are negotiating in our most intense conflicts is not just some material self-interest, but the very foundations of our identities.” Don Tucker, neuroscientist and psychologist

    Our brain’s most basic function is the ability to encode perceptual experience in dynamic neural networks, what I like to call neural matrices of meaning. This capacity is the basis of learning, memory, cognition, and identity and provides the physical framework for our beliefs and understandings, those very experiences involved in conflict and its resolution. The book presents the neural encoding function in laymen’s terms, describes seven key characteristics, and explores their implications for communication, relationship, and conflict resolution. It then looks at applications to practice within four categories: theoretical issues; stages of the process; practice issues; and process design considerations.

    Along the way, Embodied Conflict locates the field of conflict resolution within the long arc of human history and asks whether and how conflict resolution practice can take another step forward by taking into account the reality of the neural basis of experience of parties in conflict. The book includes many case examples and also offers some suggestions for how conflict resolution practitioner training might be expanded to include this theoretical framework and its implications for practice.

    You can get a 20% discount by using the code FLR40 at

    You can read an excerpt of the book at:

    where you’ll find the Introduction chapter. This is actually the second section of the book, following a relatively long preface. will publish Chapter 2 as an excerpt this week. That second chapter presents the basic neural encoding function upon which the book is based.

    Thanks for your interest. I welcome your thoughts and responses. You can reach me at


    Tim Hicks

    Read about Tim’s climate change novel at:

    See Tim’s new book Embodied Conflict: the neural basis of conflict and communication at


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