Conflict resolution and peace building mechanisms remain problematic for most societies in Africa including those in Ethiopia, as most of them are trying to imitate western modalities rather than using their own indigenous institutions. Indigenous conflict resolution and management are proven as less complex and time saving, and participating parties in conflict solve their own problems and handle their affairs in a relative ways more acceptable to them. However, the role this important institutions play in solving the disputes is becoming weak with time. In-depth understanding of the conflicts, indigenous conflicts resolution and management mechanisms, and designing holistic strategies and approaches for addressing the conflicts are very crucial. Therefore, this study reviewed indigenous rangeland conflict management and resolution mechanisms in pastoral areas of Ethiopia. Moreover, it attempts to identify the nature, types, causes, and consequences of conflicts. Conflict has devastating consequences on the lives and livelihoods of pastoral society and the economy of the country as whole. Gain over the control of scarce and strategic resources, particularly water and pasture which is further exacerbated by different factors are among the major causes. Alternative conflict resolution mechanisms need to be strengthened and indigenous customary institutions that regulate access and use of resources need to be empowered. The Elder’s council should gain legal recognition, and mechanisms are also needed to allow customary institutions to function in harmony with current modern government structures.
Key words: Conflict, conflict management and resolution, Ethiopia, pastoral areas, resource.