For anyone struggling with conflict, this book can transform you. Negotiating the Nonnegotiable takes you on a journey into the heart and soul of conflict, providing unique insight into the emotional undercurrents that too often sweep us out to sea. With vivid stories of his closed-door sessions with warring political groups, disputing businesspeople, and families in crisis, Daniel Shapiro presents a universally applicable method to successfully navigate conflict.  A deep, provocative book to reflect on and wrestle with, this book can change your life.

Be warned: This book is not a quick fix. Real change takes work. You will learn how to master five emotional dynamics that can sabotage conflict outside your awareness:

  1. Vertigo: How can you avoid getting emotionally consumed in conflict?
  2. Repetition compulsion: How can you stop repeating the same conflicts again and again?
  3. Taboos: How can you discuss sensitive issues at the heart of the conflict?
  4. Assault on the sacred: What should you do if your values feel threatened?
  5. Identity politics: What can you do if others use politics against you?

The paperback edition of this landmark book is updated with practical material to help you apply the method to your own most difficult relations, especially in these turbulent times.

“Quite simply, the best book I have ever read on negotiating in situations of extreme conflict.”  –Matthew Bishop, The Economist Group

Praise for Negotiating the Nonnegotiable

“Dan Shapiro has written a masterpiece—clear, insightful, and practical—about the most difficult and emotionally-charged of negotiations: those that revolve around identity. Highly recommended!”
—William Ury, co-author of Getting to Yes and author of Getting to Yes with Yourself
“Dan Shapiro has written a book that is at once both profound and practical, heartfelt and hopeful. At a time when one of our world’s most alarming fault-lines is the growing polarization between individuals and groups—divided by race, ethnicity, politics, religion, or class—immersion in his wisdom is a must for anyone trying to prevent or resolve these conflicts.”
—Matthew Bishop, senior editor The Economist Group and cofounder of the Social Progress Index
“A life-changing book!  If you are going to read one book this year to improve your life, choose Negotiating the Nonnegotiable.  You will feel as though you are sitting down with one of the world’s preeminent negotiation experts and gaining the secrets to resolve your toughest conflicts.  It should be a required reading for anyone in a conflict – which is to say for all of us.”
Simona Baciu, Founder and President, Transylvania College
“In Negotiating the Nonnegotiable, Daniel Shapiro provides us with one of the most optimistic and compelling approaches to conflict resolution of our time … We benefit from Shapiro’s decades of research on the underlying complexities of negotiation and learn from his most important breakthrough: that we do not have to sacrifice our deepest values in order to find common ground.”
—Howard W. Buffett, Lecturer in International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
Negotiating the Nonnegotiable is one of the most important books of our modern era. Dan Shapiro gives us a whole new set of tools to tackle our toughest disputes—those that threaten our identity.  This brilliant book is innovative, practical, and exactly what we need in today’s world.”
​—Jaime de Bourbon de Parme, Ambassador of the Netherlands to the Holy See
Negotiating the Nonnegotiable offers valuable insights for reimagining our approach to conflict resolution at every level—from the interpersonal to the global. Grounded in decades of fieldwork and firsthand experience, Daniel Shapiro’s thoughtful book invites us to engage in negotiation through the framework of personal identity, and to seek successful outcomes in a spirit of empathy and compassion.”
—Jack DeGioia, President, Georgetown University
Negotiating the Nonnegotiable is a fascinating read that gets to the core of all kinds of conflicts.  Daniel Shapiro draws on his lifetime’s work to examine processes that lead from discord to harmony and from war to peace. His book is a gripping account of how people of every persuasion can come together and find a new beginning.  Anyone with an interest in the work of reconciliation, peace-building, and conflict resolution should read this book.”
—Bertie Ahern, Former Prime Minister of Ireland 1997-2008; Co-negotiator of the Good Friday Agreement
“An extraordinary book that will change your life.”
—Lt. Jack Cambria, Commanding Officer NYPD Hostage Negotiation Team (Retired)
 “Welcome to Negotiation 3.0! Dan Shapiro gives us new eyes through which to understand even the most difficult negotiations—and a powerful new toolkit to overcome them. Negotiators from both my own country of Japan and from around the world will be inspired by this important new text, and will benefit immensely from it.”
—Jiro Tamura, Professor of Law, Keio University, President, Negotia Club (Japan)
“Daniel Shapiro brings brilliant insights to the baffling conundrum of our age, intractable disputes of all kinds. Both a seasoned psychologist and international negotiator, Shapiro shows us how people’s deep identities are both problem and solution. Negotiating the Nonnegotiable will help anyone bring practical tools to the table whenever confrontation looms.”
—Daniel Goleman, author Emotional Intelligence
“With telling examples from the bedroom to the boardroom to the war room, this book gives us something invaluable—a way both to see the perils of identity conflict in negotiation and to avoid them.”
—Prof. Robert Cialdini, Author of Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
“Part manual and part memoir, Daniel Shapiro offers insight into negotiation and identity culled from an extraordinary career working on critical conflicts around the world.  Negotiating the Nonnegotiable is sure to be required reading for diplomats and peace-builders alike seeking more effective practice and a broader toolbox for solving seemingly intractable conflicts.”
​–Nancy Lindborg, President, United States Institute of Peace
“Dan Shapiro has tackled one of the most vexing problems in a world racked by conflict and violence: how to reach common ground when peoples hold different values and hate each other. His insights, drawn from years of study and travel, are both instructive and inspiring. Those seeking peaceful resolutions should keep this book on a bedside table.”
—David Gergen, former White House adviser; Co-director and Professor of public service, Center for Public Leadership, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
 “A must-read! Dan Shapiro’s Negotiating the Nonnegotiable offers bold, practical, and uplifting advice to reduce the turmoil of conflict and foster reconciliation in your professional and personal life. His innovative and compelling approach significantly advances our understanding of successful dispute resolution.”
—Michael Wheeler, Harvard Business School
“Daniel Shapiro’s Negotiating the Nonnegotiable is a modern masterpiece. Bold and compelling from the first page, he shines a light on the dark divisive forces of conflict, whilst describing pathways towards space and harmony through the power of reconciliation and affiliation. It is the ultimate proof that addressing conflict requires a courageous head as much as a collaborative heart. Every leader should read it and live by it.”
—Katherine Garrett-Cox, CEO, Alliance Trust Investments
“This fascinating book tells us a lot about the role of identity in international conflicts and how to bridge the divide. It expands our understanding of the political reconciliation in the international system.”
—Prof. Yan Xuetong, Dean of the Institute of Modern International Relations, Tsinghua University
“A wise book—full of experience, heart, and intelligence—it will give every reader insights to consider and plans to enact. We can hope that no conflict is intractable, thanks to this book. And it has great stories.”
—Susan T. Fiske, Eugene Higgins Professor of Psychology and Professor of Public Affairs, Princeton University
“No one has thought more deeply and creatively about the impact of emotions on conflict than Dan Shapiro. In Negotiating the Nonnegotiable, Dan draws on that depth of knowledge to develop a workable method that enables us to deal effectively with emotional conflicts that all too often seem nonnegotiable.”
—Jeswald W. Salacuse, Henry J. Braker Professor, the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University; author of Negotiating Life