The former executive secretary of the TRRC, Dr Baba Galleh Jallow has been invited to serve as the inaugural Roger D Fisher Fellow in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution at Harvard University Law School. The invitation was based on Dr Jallow’s background as a former journalist and human rights advocate, an academic who taught in two US universities, and most especially his work in transitional justice at the TRRC, now globally considered a model for successful truth commissions.
Roger D Fisher, a distinguished Harvard Law School professor who passed away in 2012, was co-founder and director emeritus of Harvard’s Programme on Negotiation and co-author of the international bestseller, Getting To Yes: Negotiating An Agreement Without Giving In, which has been translated into 36 languages. Fisher was a professor at Harvard Law School for over 40 years. He has written many books and articles on the art and science of negotiation and conflict resolution, and was involved, among other things, in negotiating an end to apartheid in South Africa.
“Roger Fisher was a pioneering visionary who helped to create the academic field of negotiation and conflict resolution and who put his own ideas into practice resolving conflicts large and small around the world,” said Dean John Manning of the Harvard Law School in welcoming the setting up of the Fisher Fellowship fund by the Fisher family. “With intellectual rigour and creativity, he approached the fundamental problem of how human beings can get past seemingly intractable disputes that threaten peace and stability.”
According to the letter of invitation to Dr Jallow from Harvard Law School, “Roger D Fisher’s family endowed this fellowship to honour Professor Fisher, who devoted his career to studying and advancing the art and science of conflict resolution and negotiation. Professor Fisher sought ways to apply learning about negotiation and leadership to address difficult national and international questions and advance crucial goals… The Roger D Fisher Fellowship seeks to continue Professor Fisher’s life’s work by bringing to Harvard Law School individuals of national and international stature who have demonstrated a commitment to making progress through the processes of negotiation and leadership. It would mean so much to our community to learn from your wide-ranging experience with different forms of negotiation, influence, coalition-building, societal reconciliation and influencing long term social change. Your presence as our inaugural Fisher Fellow would enable our students to enrich their understanding of these processes and enrich conversations across the Harvard Law School and wider University.”
Reacting, Dr Jallow stated: “I feel deeply humbled and honoured to be named the inaugural Fisher Fellow and entrusted with the responsibility to continue Professor Fisher’s life’s work at Harvard. He was a great man and a brilliant scholar whose work on negotiation and conflict resolution is internationally acclaimed. I was particularly pleased to learn about Professor Fisher’s contribution to negotiating an end to apartheid in South Africa.”
“I am grateful to Harvard Law School for considering me worthy of this honour and, God willing, will commence the one-year fellowship at Harvard in the summer of 2023,” he added.
Baba Jallow holds a Ph D in African History from the University of California at Davis, a Masters in Liberal Studies from Rutgers University, Camden, New Jersey and a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science from Fourah Bay College, the University of Sierra Leone. In late 2017, he was invited to return home from exile in the United States to help set up and serve as executive secretary of the TRRC.