Interpersonal Communication and Conflict Resolution in Community Development

Interpersonal Communication and Conflict Resolution in Community Development: A Study of Ivo Local Government Area

Literature Review

Introduction to Literature Review

The main purpose of this chapter is to find out the meaning of concept “interpersonal communication in conflict resolution and its effort in developing communities” with regard for the view point of some authors and their difference opinion about the concept. Here many authors review the meaning of interpersonal communication and connect it to the importance in resolving conflict and encouraging development in our various communities in Ivo Local Government Area.

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This can be seen according to Rose Nwankwo (2010: 140) to be defined as any process where by decisional premises are transmitted from one member of our organization to another according to Okeke and Anoje (2012:1) communication is  a process of sharing our ideas thought and feeling with people and having those ideas thought and feelings understood by the people we are talking with according to Nwokeneme (2009:2) communication is a process that involves transmission of message or information through a channel from sender to receiver. According to Opubor (19985: 158) sees communication as an activity in a face to face situation people interacting in a face to face situation or may involve one person narrating a    story before a particular group or audience or many people reading the thought of one person or voice. from the above listed definition one can see or say that communication is indispensable to life thus to live is to communicate. All living things communicate in one way or the other. For instance living cell communicate by means of hormones and nerve fibers, while animals and insect communicate by means of chemical movement and sound. Human being on the other hand use all of these to communicate in addition to words.


The word communication is derived from Latin word “Communicare” which means to share. Sharing denotatively implies partaking, cooperation hence  is a social activity. from this generic it can be inferred that communication constitutes a social process whereby a community of human beings or animals share something. In this context what they share are idea , information emotions feelings etc. therefore  communication  can be defined as a process by which information  or message is being transmitted from sender to receiver through a channel. According to Asomugha and Chukwukaelo (2014:1) communication is the act by one or more persons of sending and receiving message distorted by noise within contact with some effect and some opportunity for feedback. According to Nwaokeneme (2009:2) communication is a process that involves the transmittion of message or information through a channel from sender to receiver.


Communication as we have seen is a process of transmiting pasing, sending information, ideas thought or reading from individual o another through a previously agreed symbol. These are listed according to Nwokeneme (2009:3) and according to Okeke and Nnjo (2010:5) as follows







These process can be explained as follows for further understanding by the reader.

THE SOURCE: In communication process the source refers to the initiator, sender or encoder of message. He is the originator of communication process

THE MESSAGE: The main purpose of communication is to transmit message or information,the message may consist thought feeling.

THE CHANNEL OR MEDIUM: The form in which the message is sent or transmitted using communication process it could be either oral or written

THE RECEIVER: The receiver or decoder constitutes a major part in communication process. Effective communication cannot be achieved without receiver.

THE FEEDBACK; The feedback is a  process by which the receiver react to the message transmitted

THE NOISE OR INTERFERENCE; Noise is an obstacle or hindrance to effective communication. This process can as well explain diagrammatically according to Nwaokeneme (2009:4)


S              M            C       R





These types of communication can be seen and explained according to Nwokeneme (2009:11) and according to Nwadukwe and Chuke (2003:134) af follows

VERBAL COMMUNICATION: This has to do with spoken words. This type of communication refers to communication through the use of language or purely human and instinctive method of conveying ideas through the use of sound and symbols under this type of communication we have oral and written communication

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ORAL COMMUNICATION: This is the type of communication that involves speech.

WRITTEN COMMUNICATION: this is the type of communication represent human language by graphic symbols.

NON-VERBAL COMMUNICATION; This is wordless communication. In his communication we communicate through our bodies without using word. Example of this nonverbal communication include.

BODY LANGUAGE: Body language refers to message which are with the face and other part of the body.

BODY GESTURE; This is the type of communication that involves the way we use the various part of our body during communication process.

POSTURE: Posture has to do with the way speaker stands and position himself before the audience.

MOVEMENT: Movement is a form action and potent way of communication attentions.


There are three main broad levels of communication according to Nwokeneme (2009:9) according Asomugha and Chukwunaelo (2014:69) the three major level of communication in Nwokeneme stands as part of the level of communication these are;

INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION: This is the type of communication that take place within individuals

INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION; This is the basically the type of communication that take place within individuals. Interpersonal communication; this is the type of communication that occurs between two or more persons in a face to face communication encounter. According to Chukwunelo (2014:70) Interpersonal communication is that form of communication which takes place between persons.

GROUP AND MASS COMMUNICATION; According to Asomugha and Chukwunelo (2014:70) in this pattern of communication, the exchange is among three persons and above. This is the type of communication where large number of people are involves in a communication encounter. The message may have the main  purpose to achieve and it may be through mechanical device, that is radio, newspaper, magazine etc.


I THE MEANING OF INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION: this is about communication between people usually in face to face private and unstructured setting with another person  or group without the aid of mechanical device. According to Gamble (2002:9) when you are engaged in interpersonal communication you interact with another, learn about him/her and act in a way that sustain or terminate your relationship. According to Nwokeneme (2009:21) this type of communication occurs between two persons in a face to face communication encounter.

  1. This is the type of communication that take place between two or more person in face to face communication encounter.
  2. This nature of communication occurs with immediate feedback.
  • Interpersonal communication operates through multiple channels of at the same time.
  1. The decoder process is quite similar to the encoder process
  • MEANING AND NATURE OF CONFLICT; The term conflict has many definition from different authors and scholars base on individual opinions and point of views. Conflict means misunderstanding, controversy and other situation that is so un-conducive to people and their programmes according to Eberenwa 92014:122) conflict is the total range of behavior at attitudes that express opposition and divergent orientation between industrial owner and manager on the one hand and working people and their organization on the other according to March and Simon (1995:81) They see conflict from administrative position in an organization it is appropriate, they noted that the term conflict is the total range of behavior at attitudes that express opposite and divergent orientations between industrial owner and manger on the one hand and working people and their organization on the other . according to march and Simon (1995:81) they see conflict from administration position on organization, it is appropriate, they noted that the term conflict is generally applied to a break down in the standard of mechanism of decision making so that an individual or group experience difficult in selecting an action alternatively. Horn (1980:17) he defined conflict as compromising of following elements namely, fight, quarrel, struggle, bitterness, argument, opposition etc. March and Simon(1995:85) further explained conflict as implying to ,mutual destruction of relationship of individual involve in clash.
  • The nature of conflict

According to March and Simon the nature of conflict can be seen as follows

INDIVIDUAL CONFLICT: This involves personal inability to resolve two or more imputes that cannot function together at the same time.

ORGANIZATIONAL OR SOCIETAL CONFLICT: This is defined as a conscious struggle with others for the similar objective between individual or group within organization.

INTER GOVERNMENTAL CONFLICT : In the opinion of March and Simon individual conflict can result in comp ability of alternative


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According to Eberenma (2014:1) development involve the entire social system. U.N Publication (1963:1) defined development as the [process of allowing and encouraging people to meet their own aspiration. According   Riodney (1969) development is a multisided or many sided process. Todaro (1985:108) defined development as a multi-dimensional process involving re-organization and re-orientation. Community can be seen as a group of people in a particular area while development can be seen as a change or increment of a particular thing or object to attain to a specific level which it has not attained before. Therefore, community development, thus draws great inspiration from the desire to have the ability of a means to lean  and change through voluntary method that is (free from coercion) and through voluntary method of participation of individuals and groups in a development process for the achievement of some definite goals.

This is the nature of development that takes place in the rural area to enhance the standard of living of the rural dwellers, which is supported by Onwuka (2008:13) where he say that community development is a process by which effort of the people themselves are united with that of governmental authority to improve the economic political and cultural condition of the people to enable them contribute fully to the national progress of the nation. Therefore community development in the increment in social, economic, political and cultural condition of the peoples.

Finally community development is the nature of development that made life of people living in a particular area to change from poverty to reach in all ramification of their life.

Theoretical Framework

THEORY: this is conglomeration or a collective theories and vision of scholars about how desirable change in a society is best achieved and how lasting peace can be maintained in our organizations Ivo Local government as my case of study. For the purpose of this research, two theories will be used, as considered most appropriate in the cause of this study.



The six Ps (model or approach) of community development theory by Kamhi and Thompson (1997) according to them, the term authentic community is described as healthy and true community. According to this model, numerous element are involved in fostering authentic community development. The most fundamental element in fostering the authentic community development include, similar interest, common purpose, peer influence, social interaction, stability and self determination. They say that communities is matured when members are collaborated to create their own standard and commit themselves to maintain satisfactory interaction among members through personal contact not through rules and regulation.

Relevance of the Theory to the Study

The theory talk about healthy and true community and elements which leads to authentic community development. In this theory, community cannot develop when there is no common or similar interest, common purpose, social interaction, stability and self determination, because the absence of this fundamental element will lead organization or even a country to crises controversy and conflict which Ivo local government is not excluded. A theory equally talk about the social interaction that is the interaction of people involved in the community development programme to enable them achieve their felt neer and maintain satisfactory standard of living. They believe that community is matured when members is collaborated together through personal interaction to create their own standard, and level of maturity. Community attain determined level of development archived by that community. All this key fundamental element cannot be achieved without communication, that is to say people must involve themselves through interpersonal communication to lay their own view and opinion towards the achievement of mature and authentic community development to enhance the standard of living of the people in Ivo local government.

Criticism of the Theory

The theory was criticized for not recognizing that human being is a product of change and it is only thing that is constant in life and they need discipline through rules and regulation to regulate the changing nature of human being

Theory of Conflict Resolution and Analysis Propounded By Morton Dutsh (1973)

Conflict resolution as a discipline has developed theoretically insight into the nature as source of conflict and how conflict can be resolved through peaceful method to affected durable settlement. Morton Dutsh proposition was generally accepted on conflict resolution, he proposed two models of conflict resolution which were co-operative or productive model and competitive and destructive model of conflict resolution cooperative or productive model and competitive or destructive model of conflict resolution. Cooperative or productive model.  One of the first insight into the beneficial consequence of cooperation as an academic enquiry. In his view numbers of factor like the nature of dispute and the goal each party aim at are pivotal in determining the kind orientation a party would bring to the negotiation table in it attempt to solve conflict. The two basic orientation exist in conflict resolution will determine the type of interaction which would occur between the negotiating parties as a result of their disputing style.

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Cooperative disposition of the party would evoke an atmosphere of trust and eventually lead to mutually beneficial option for settlement. He believes that if community within Ivo local government were cooperative and have mutual trust to each other that conflict will be effectively resolved. He equally said that the goal and aim each party has towards conflict will determine what they will bring in their negotiation table. Finally, he said in cooperative model of conflict resolution there will be positive production and constructive when the parties involve forget about their personal interest and pursue the common interest of the community. And if this is done it will generate the atmosphere of trust and eventually lead to mutually beneficial option of settlement. That is to say that without mutual trust and common interest with agreement conflict cannot be resoved in our communities and there will be no development.

One of the major example of the models to my study is the issue of political crisis in (2003) which they resolved through mutual trust and agreement of the two communicates that is Akaeze and Isiagu without minding the party they belong , However when there is trust agreement and common interest between and within our communities it eventually eradicate disagreement, crisis controversy and conflict of any kind which will give room for good standard of  living on the entire local government.

On the other hand competitive approach or model lead to win and lose outcome. This model is inclined to intensifying animosity and distrust between parties and generally considered destructive. He said for a conflict to be resolved among the conflicting parties, there must be wine and loss principle that is to say that one party must accept loss for the other party to win for, peace to rain within our local government or community. It means without one party accept defeat or loss for the other party to win, peace will not come and there will be  no development. It is very destructive and negative in nature because no one will be happy to accept the defeat, there by prolonging the conflict. The major problem here is who will accept defeat for his or her opposition to win. The major example of this model to my study is the issue of land dispute between the two communities in 1991, which Akaeze agreed to loss part of their land to Isiagu community for peace to rain and for conflict to be resolved.

The Criticism of the Theory

Some critics of this approach argue that both cooperative and competitive are essentially to some extent to effective resolution of conflict since negotiation of a desirable agreement is always inclined with diverse goal. Thus finding a balance between these models is the key to successful negotiation

Interpersonal Communication and Conflict Resolution in Community Development: A Study of Ivo Local Government Area


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