The study of conflict and nursing has generated a complex set of literatures. Communication scholars prioritize interactive dynamics, offering well-developed theory. Nurse researchers prioritize dynamics of a clinical environment. This review offers a background in organizational conflict studies, summarizing social scientific advances to provide a conceptual foundation for nursing conflict research. Nursing literature frames conflict as a feature of the workplace environment, equated with emotion—particularly incivility. Communication literature frames conflict as natural and functional, focusing on issues but neglecting emotion. The most fruitful approach would rely on a communication-grounded view of conflict processes and a nursing-grounded view of workplace context. Together, communication and nursing researchers can create an approach to nursing conflict superior to either body of literature on its own. This review supports that end. First, it summarizes organizational conflict research. Next, nursing conflict research is reviewed and critiqued in light of conflict communication theory, highlighting research well-grounded in social science. The scope of this review is conflict among persons and interactive processes of conflict management, concentrating on nurses but also including other healthcare professionals (usually physicians).
Nicotera, A. M. (2021). Nursing and Conflict Communication: A Review. Nursing Communication, 1 (1). Retrieved from https://repository.usfca.edu/nursingcommunication/vol1/iss1/6