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Intergroup Conflict vs. Intragroup Conflict: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on December 21, 2023
Intergroup conflict occurs between different groups, while intragroup conflict happens within a single group.

Key Differences

Intergroup conflict involves disputes between separate groups, organizations, or nations. Intragroup conflict, however, occurs within a single group, team, or organization.
An example of intergroup conflict is rivalry between different sports teams. In contrast, intragroup conflict might be disagreements among members of the same team.
Intergroup conflict often arises from competition for resources, differing goals, or ideological differences. Intragroup conflict can stem from personal differences, role ambiguity, or competition within the group.
Resolving intergroup conflict may require diplomacy, negotiation, or mediation between groups. Intragroup conflict often requires internal mediation, communication improvement, and conflict resolution skills within the group.
Intergroup conflict can lead to larger societal impacts, such as political tension or war. Intragroup conflict can disrupt group cohesion and productivity, affecting the group's overall performance.

Comparison Chart

Nature of Conflict

Between different groups
Within the same group

Common Causes

Resource competition, ideological differences
Personal differences, role conflicts

Resolution Methods

Diplomacy, negotiation, external mediation
Internal mediation, communication improvement


Rivalries between companies or countries
Disagreements among team members

Potential Impacts

Societal, political tension, war
Reduced group cohesion, lowered productivity

Intergroup Conflict and Intragroup Conflict Definitions

Intergroup Conflict

A clash of ideologies or interests between different groups.
Political parties frequently engage in intergroup conflict during election campaigns.

Intragroup Conflict

Disagreements or disputes among members of the same group.
Intragroup conflict arose in the committee over the allocation of funds.

Intergroup Conflict

Competition for resources or territory between distinct groups.
Wildlife conservationists are often involved in intergroup conflict with urban developers.

Intragroup Conflict

Conflict occurring within a single group or team.
The project team faced intragroup conflict due to differing opinions on the strategy.

Intergroup Conflict

A rivalry or competition between separate teams or organizations.
The intergroup conflict between rival sports teams intensified during the championship.

Intragroup Conflict

A clash of personalities or interests within a group.
Diverse work styles led to intragroup conflict in the design team.

Intergroup Conflict

A dispute arising from differences between separate societal or ethnic groups.
Historical prejudices often lead to intergroup conflict in diverse societies.

Intragroup Conflict

Conflict arising from role ambiguity or competition within a group.
Unclear responsibilities triggered intragroup conflict among the staff.

Intergroup Conflict

Conflict occurring between different groups or organizations.
The intergroup conflict between the two companies escalated due to market competition.

Intragroup Conflict

Tensions or disagreements within a single organization or team.
The intragroup conflict in the marketing department affected the launch of the new campaign.


Can intergroup conflict be positive?

It can lead to positive change if managed constructively.

What causes intergroup conflict?

Often due to resource competition, differing goals, or ideologies.

What is intergroup conflict?

Conflict between different groups, organizations, or nations.

What is intragroup conflict?

Conflict occurring within a single group or organization.

How can intergroup conflict be resolved?

Through diplomacy, negotiation, or external mediation.

What is an example of intergroup conflict?

Rivalry between different political parties or countries.

Can intragroup conflict be beneficial?

Yes, if it leads to better understanding and solutions within the group.

What role does communication play in intragroup conflict?

Effective communication is key to resolving and preventing intragroup conflict.

Do all groups experience intragroup conflict?

Most groups face some form of intragroup conflict at some point.

What causes intragroup conflict?

Often arises from personal differences, role conflicts, or internal competition.

How can intragroup conflict be resolved?

Through internal mediation, communication improvement, and conflict resolution skills.

Does intergroup conflict always involve violence?

Not necessarily, it can also be non-violent, like economic or ideological conflict.

How can leaders prevent intragroup conflict?

By fostering a positive team culture and clear communication.

Can intragroup conflict affect a group's performance?

Yes, it can disrupt group cohesion and lower productivity.

Is intergroup conflict more common in certain environments?

It's more common in competitive environments or where resources are scarce.

Can conflict resolution skills be applied to both types of conflict?

Yes, though the approaches may differ depending on the conflict type.

How does intergroup conflict affect society?

It can lead to societal tension, political strife, or even war.

What is an example of intragroup conflict?

Disagreements among team members on a project strategy.

Can intergroup conflict lead to positive societal changes?

Yes, if managed well, it can lead to reform and improved relations.

Is intragroup conflict more intense than intergroup conflict?

It depends on the situation, but intragroup conflict can be intensely personal.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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