Mitchell R. Hammer, Ph.D.



Dr. Mitchell Hammer is the Founder of IDI, LLC. He has achieved an international reputation as a social innovator, developing powerful ideas and innovative practices that improve people’s lives throughout the world by addressing some of our most difficult social problems. Dr. Hammer is a person who propels social change at the intersection of cultural differences: Solving problems and resolving conflicts, building intercultural competence, moving conversations around racism and prejudice to cross-cultural understanding and empathy, and saving lives under conditions of violence and threat. 

Dr. Hammer is professor emeritus of International Peace and Conflict Resolution in the School of International Service at the American University in Washington D.C. His work spans a wide range of organizations including private corporations, not-for-profit organizations, state and local law enforcement agencies, and federal agencies, including NASA Johnson Space Center, The Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Hammer’s cutting edge work has resulted in (1) the Intercultural Development Inventory®, an assessment instrument and process that is used throughout the world to build intercultural competence, (2) the Intercultural Conflict Style (ICS) Inventory®, a theoretical model and assessment tool used by mediators, trainers, managers and counselors to bridge cultural differences in solving problems and resolving disagreements and conflict, and (3) the SAFE Dialogue™ approach to crisis intervention and hostage negotiation used by universities, organizations and federal and local agencies.

Dr. Hammer provided advisement on negotiation strategies concerning the hostage crisis in Peru to the Government of Japan as well as Japanese private-sector representatives who had employees taken hostage and has also advised negotiators involved in successfully securing the release of an American taken hostage in Latin America. Dr. Hammer has advised the Behavior and Performance Laboratory of the NASA Johnson Space Center for the International Space Station Program on cross-cultural communication. 

Dr. Hammer’s book, Saving Lives (2007) presents a comprehensive explanation of the innovative S.A.F.E. approach for resolving crisis situations. Saving Lives was given the annual award for Outstanding Scholarly Book in Applied Communication by the National Communication Association in 2008. His previous book, Dynamic Processes of Crisis Negotiation (1997), was honored with the “Outstanding Book Award” in 1998 by the International Association of Conflict Management. He has published widely, with 3 books, 73 articles, 145 conference papers and presentations, and been honored with 55 professional awards and keynote addresses, including the “Senior Interculturalist Award of Achievement” by the Society of Intercultural Education, Training and Research.



Joined IDI, LLC