Deutsch's theory of cooperative and competitive conflict may be usefully extended to Dutch people. Results of LISREL analyses on data collected from interviews of Dutch employees in 2 companies indicate that competitive goals interfered with the open, constructive discussion of opposing views. However, cooperative goals were not found to contribute to constructive controversy. Dutch who discussed their opposing views openly made progress on the task, worked efficiently, and strengthened their work relationship and their confidence in future collaboration. These results do not argue that Dutch and North Americans handle conflict similarly, for how these groups operationalize the theory may differ significantly. Goal interdependence may have the potential to be a framework for promoting conflict management between Dutch and North Americans.
Copyright © 1997 by V. H. Winston & Son, Inc
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