At various times in the conflict cycle, external actors (international organizations, states, NGOs, individuals, etc.) can attempt to help manage conflict in a number of different ways. These players can use a wide spectrum of diplomatic, economic and security incentives to de-escalate violent conflict once the spiral begins. There is, as Samantha Power writes, a “continuum of intervention” involving an evolution in the application of force from a group of non-coercive incentives on one end of the spectrum to more coercive incentives or pressures at the other end. These options can prove useful in promoting peace and will be presented here as a typology of incentive strategies. Consequently, this article focuses on the possible range of incentives available to outside players in order to manage conflict and to encourage negotiated settlements. I examine these options in theory and more specifically in the context of outside efforts (specifically by the United States) to de-escalate violence in the North–South civil war in Sudan (1983–2005). Here, I ask how key members of the international community have used incentives in an effort to reach a negotiated peace settlement in Sudan.