The Third Side: A User Guide to the Beyond Intractability System for Third Siders

Who are Third Siders?

Additional Third Side Resources

Third Siders are people who:

  • Try to see both sides of a conflict
  • Encourage cooperative solutions to disputes
  • Encourage people to fight in fair and constructive ways, not in unfair or destructive ways.
  • Encourage wise decisions which meet everyone's interests and needs as much as possible.

The Third Side concept was developed by William Ury and is explained in detail in a book by the same name, and a website,

This user guide is designed to supplement those resources by guiding third siders to Beyond Intractability resources that are likely to be especially useful to them. It also serves to give Beyond Intractability users a greater understanding of the ten third side roles and of how they might play some of those roles themselves.

Click on the links below to learn more about materials in Beyond Intractability that are particularly applicable to each of the third side roles.

Insights on the Third Side from:

William Ury

Joshua Weiss


Beyond Intractability User Guides for:

Much of the material on this user guide is drawn from Thanks to Bill Ury and Josh Weiss for giving us permission to republish their material here.