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© 2012 The President and Fellows of Harvard College
Repository: Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University
Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: HOLLIS 012970931
Creator: Roger Fisher
Title: Papers, 1950-2002.
Quantity: 208 boxes.
Abstract: This collection documents the professional career of Roger Fisher, including his time in the private sector, government, as an independent consultant and, most prominently, in education as a Professor at the Harvard Law School. The collection includes: correspondence; research notes, unpublished articles, briefs, drafts, reports, speeches, and newspaper clippings.
The material in this collection primarily reflects the professional life of Harvard Law School professor Roger Fisher. Covering a period beginning in the 1940s up to his retirement in 2002, the collection documents a career that saw Fisher work in the private sector, government, and education as well as serving as a consultant on many high profile international negotiations. The bulk of the material reflects his work as a professor of law and as a member of the Harvard community. His involvement in the co-founding and development of the Harvard Negotiation Project, and the Conflict Management Group is well documented in the collection. Also well documented is his work on the television series "The Advocates" and material related to the publication of many of his books including the bestselling Getting to YES: Negotiating Without Giving In. The collection includes: correspondence, research notes, unpublished articles, briefs, drafts, manuscripts, reports, speeches, and newspaper clippings.
- Series I.Correspondence, 1958-2004
Contains correspondence to and from Fisher covering a variety of topics. The titles for Subseries A, B, C, and D are those used by Fisher.
- Subseries A. Early Correspondence, April 1958 - December 1967
- Subseries B.Correspondence files, 1980-1991
- Subseries C.Correspondence files, 1990s
- Subseries D.Correspondence files, 1990s for programs and individuals
- Subseries E.Miscellaneous Correspondence
Loose correspondence found while processing the collection.
- Subseries F.Internal and External correspondence, 1983-2004
External correspondence 1983-2004 (outgoing) and internal correspondence (incoming) 1987-1991, arranged chronologically within External and Internal.
- Subseries G.Additional Miscellaneous Correspondence
There is some original organization to this material. Most of this is incomplete, but attempts were made to respect Fisher's arrangement whenever possible.
- Series II.Teaching, 1960-2000
Fisher taught at Harvard Law School from 1958 until 2002. He also taught at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government (KSG), the London School of Economics, the Naval War College, Air War College, and the NATO Defense College. The bulk of the material in this Series is from his teaching at the Law School.
- Subseries A.Harvard Law School
These files are arranged alphabetically by class title.
- Subseries B.Kennedy School of Government
Fisher teaching materials for KSG courses.
- Subseries C. Social Science 174 (Coping with International Law seminar)
Fisher teaching materials for the CWIC course.
- Subseries D.Non-Harvard Teaching
Fisher's teaching materials from the London School of Economics, the Naval War College, the Air War College, and the NATO Defense College.
- Subseries E.Administrative
Fisher's Harvard Law School administrative files.
- Series III.Harvard Negotiation Project (HNP) 1980-2006
HNP materials, mostly related to the Negotiation Workshops taught by Fisher
- Subseries A.Negotiation Workshops
Negotiation Workshop materials arranged chronologically from 1980-2006
- Subseries B.Administrative and Subject files
Administrative and subject files relating to the negotiation workshops and HNP operations.
- Subseries C.Program of Instruction for Lawyers (PIL) 1991-1995
- Subseries D.Program on Negotiation (PON)
- Series IV. Management Groups
Fisher co-founded or played an important role in the creation of several management groups. Conflict Management Group (CMG) is a non-profit consulting group through which Fisher did international work and Conflict Management, Inc. (CMI) is a for-profit consulting firm specializing in training people in mediation and negotiation. In 2004, CMG merged with Mercy Corps
- Series V. International Consulting 1960s-1990s
Materials relating to Fisher's various international negotiations, arranged alphabetically by country and region. He served in different roles at the request of various individuals, groups, and governments.
- Series VI. Arms Control, 1950s-1980s
This material documents Fisher's work in Arms Control negotiation as an independent researcher, a member of several organizations, and on the behalf of the government.
- Subseries A.Enforcement and Disarmament
Materials relating to arms control, especially enforcement and disarmament.
- Subseries B. Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR)
Materials relating more directly to the political situation between the United State and the USSR during the Cold War era.
- Subseries C. Lawyers Alliance for Nuclear Arms Control (LANAC)
- Subseries D.Council for a Livable World (CLW)
- Subseries E. Additional Papers & Research
Additional papers, reports, and research related to arms control. Most of the material was not created by Fisher.
- Series VII. Writings
This series contains material related to Fisher's writings including books and articles. Material can include drafts, research materials and notes, and correspondence.
- Subseries A. Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In There was enough material related to the writing of this book that it was organized separately from Fisher's other books.
- Subseries B.Additional books written by Fisher
This subseries contains material related to other books either authored or co-authored by Fisher excluding "Getting to Yes". Contents include research material and notes, drafts, and correspondence.
- Subseries C.Published Articles
Published articles written by Fisher.
- Subseries D. Un-published Articles
Articles written by Fisher that were not completed or otherwise not published.
- Subseries E. Interviews
Interviews with Fisher and reviews about books published by him.
- Subseries F. Publishing Information
- Series VIII. Assistant to the Solicitor General 1960s-1990s
This series consists mainly of printed briefs related to cases Fisher was involved in while working in the Solicitor General's Office.Some of these publications are annotated by Fisher. One box is mainly correspondence, research, and drafts.
- Series IX.The Advocates
- Subseries A. Subject Files
- Subseries B.Administrative Files
- Subseries C.Television research
Fisher was a strong advocate for using the medium of television as a means to disseminate both legal issues and current events to a broader audience.
- Subseries D.Audio Visual
Three boxes of film reels from The Advocates and Arab and Israelis.
- Series X. Speeches, 1962-2005
- Series XI. Professional Associations
Fisher was a member or speaker for a number of organizations, conferences, seminars, and organizations. Arranged alphabetically.
- Series XII. Subject Files
Material included in this series spans the entirety of Fisher's career. These folders were discovered out of their original context (i.e. filing system) --if, indeed -- they were ever part of one and subsequently grouped by date range. After reviewing Fisher's career the cut-off date of 1980 was selected as reflective of a transitioning of his priorities and energies. This is very subjective on the archivists part and the date served as much as anything to separate a large group of material.
- Subseries A.Subject files, 1950-1979This period covers Fisher's work at Covington and Burling, the Solicitor General's office and slighty beyond his naming of the Samuel Williston Professor at Law at Harvard Law School.
- Subseries B.Subject files, 1980 - 2000s
This period witnessed the creation of the Harvard Negotiation Project and the Consulting Management Group, as well as
the publication of Getting to Yes: Negotiating Without Giving In.
- Series XII.Family
Roger Dummer Fisher was born on May 28, 1922, in Winnetka, Illinois, to Walter Taylor Fisher, a prominent Chicago lawyer, and Katharine Dummer Fisher. He grew up with four brothers and sister.After serving in World War II as a weather reconnaissance pilot, Fisher graduated from Harvard with an A.B. in Government in 1943. In 1948, he graduated from Harvard Law School with an LL.B.. That same year, Fisher married Caroline (Carrie) Speer and moved to Paris where he worked on the Marshall Plan in Paris under W. Averell Harriman from until 1949.After returning to the US, Fisher worked for the Washington D.C. law firm Covington & Burling from 1950-1956, with most of his work dealing with international issues. From 1956-1958 he served as an assistant to the Solicitor General in the Department of Justice. In 1957, Fisher argued for the United States in Roth v. United States, a landmark obscenity case, and won.In 1958, Fisher returned to Harvard Law School as a lecturer on law, becoming a full professor of law in 1960. He soon found his calling in international law and negotiations. In 1976, he achieved tenure becaming the Samuel Williston Professor of Law.In 1969, Fisher proposed the Peabody Award-winning television program The Advocates. The program focused on “stimulating public participation, and understanding, by focusing on realistic choices that must be made in the future, by having both sides of the question presented, and by demonstrating the interest that public officials have in both reasoned arguments and the views of their constituents.” Fisher was Executive Producer from 1969 to 1974 and then again bi-weekly from January 26, 1978 through September 9, 1979. In 1975 Fisher also worked on the WGBH documentary series Arabs & Israelis. His work on both of these programs was a manifestation of his interest in using television as a medium for communicating information about the law and current events to the public.In 1979, Fisher co-founded the Harvard Negotiation Project (HNP) in 1979 with William Ury and Bruce Patton, serving at the director. HNP's mission is “to improve the theory and practice of conflict resolution and negotiation by working on real world conflict intervention, theory building, education and training, and writing and disseminating new ideas.”In addition to his work at Harvard and as an author of numerous books, Fisher was a highly sought-after consultant in international negotiations from the 1960s to the 1980s. In 1981, Roger Fisher and William Ury published the bestselling book Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In , a seminal book in interest-based negotiation. In 1984 Fisher founded the consulting firm Conflict Management Group and with Howard Raiff and William Ury founded Conflict Management Inc. also in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Through these firms, Fisher was able to conduct negotiations and train negotiators around the world, including different South African government parties during the Apartheid.In 1992, Fisher became the Samuel Williston Professor of Law, fully retiring in 2002.
- May 28, 1922
- b. Roger Dummer Fisher to Walter Taylor Fisher (d. 1991), a Chicago lawyer, and Katharine Fisher (nee Dummer) (d. 1961)
- U.S. Army Air Force
- Graduated from Harvard with a B.A. in Government
- Graduated from Harvard Law School with an L.L.B.
- September 1948
- Married Caroline McMurtrie Speer (1922- 2011 and had two sons, Elliott and Peter
- Assistant to the General Counsel of the Economic Cooperation Administration in Paris
- Covington & Burling, Washington, D.C. law firm
- Assistant to the Solicitor General
- Presented oral argument for U.S. government in Roth v. United States
- Returned to Harvard Law School as Lecturer of Law
- Guggenheim Fellow in the International Relations Department of the London School of Economics
- Involved in the island of Anguilla's attempt to secede from the newly formed Associated State of St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla by drafting the Anguilla constitution and drafting a year-long agreement with Britain.
- Originator and Executive Editor of The Advocates public television series
- Executive Editor of Arabs and Israelis public television series
- Appointed Samuel Williston Professor of Law
- Co-founded the Harvard Negotiation Project with William Ury and Bruce Patton
- Publication of Getting to Yes: Negotiating Without Giving In, which Fisher co-authored with William Ury
- Co-founded Conflict Management Group (CMG) in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (CMG merged with Mercy Corps in 2004)
- Co-founded Conflict Management Inc (CMI) with Howard Raiff and William Ury in Cambridge, Massachusetts. (CMI is now CMI Concord)
- Appointed Samuel Williston Professor of Law, EmeritusAuthor:These are only some of Fisher's numerous publications
- Essays on Intervention - Roger Fisher, Richard A. Falk, Michael H. Cardozo & William T. Burke, 1964
- International Conflict and Behavioral Science , 1964
- International Conflict for Beginners , 1969
- Dear Israelis, Dear Arabs: A Working Approach to Peace , 1972
- Points of Choice: International Crises and the Role of Law , 1978
- Improving Compliance with International Law , 1981
- Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In - Roger Fisher and William Ury, 1981
- Beyond Machiavelli: Tools for Coping with Conflict - Roger Fisher, Elizabeth Kopelman, Andrea Kupfer Schneider, 1994