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News & Tips

by Jeff Thompson
February 2009

From Jeff Thompson's Enjoy Mediation

Jeff Thompson
Mediators Prepare New Darfur Peace Push
Mediators attempting to broker an end to the six-year war in Darfur met in the Qatari capital on Monday ahead of the first peace talks between the Sudanese government and the rebel Justice and Equality Movement since 2007.

"The meeting aimed at discussing and rendering the Darfur peace talks successful," the mediators said in a joint statement after their talks.

The mediators included Arab League chief Amr Mussa, OIC secretary general Ekmeleddin Ihasanoglu, African Union commission chairman Jean Ping, Qatar's state minister for foreign affairs Ahmed bin Abdullah al-Mahmud and United Nations and African Union chief negotiator on Darfur Djibril Bassole.
Full article [here]

Law Firm Expands Dispute Resolution Team
LAW firm Atteys has expanded its Dispute Resolution department into Sheffield and Rotherham.

In a bid to help more local businesses defy the credit crunch, the service brings together specialist legal advice, aimed at helping businesses and individuals resolve a wide range of problems, without the need of facing long and potentially costly courtroom battles.Atteys launched its Dispute Resolution Department in 2007 and since that time, the firm has helped many small businesses in the region to recover bad debts, overcome employment matters such as handling redundancies and unfair dismissal claims, as well as providing legal makeovers – ensuring businesses are compliant with the latest legislation.
Full article [here]

Dispute Resolution in the Recession
Recessions produce a boom in disputes — and in the past have produced a correspondingly increased volume of litigation. However, the results may differ this time around. Unexpected and especially sudden changes in the economy and, even more so, volatility (the hallmark of the global economy in 2008) generate disputes. Business expectations are shattered. Prices fluctuate. Financing is withdrawn or fails to materialize. The economic foundations of contracts collapse. And business partners, suppliers and customers fail to perform, or even go out of business.
Full article [here]

Court of Appeals Testing New Mediation
A new Court of Appeals mediation program for family law cases is saving thousands of dollars for the litigants and for the court. About half of the first twenty cases to go through the program were successfully settled, according to John Kostouros, director of the state court information office.
Full, short article [here]

Obama appoints Native woman to mediator's post
After an eight-year void in the White House, President Barack Obama has appointed an American Indian to a high-profile intergovernmental job to be the “eyes and ears” of Indian Country.The Obama administration named three people to posts in its intergovernmental affairs office on Friday, including Jodi Archambault Gillette, a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

The Lakota woman will serve as a deputy associate director in an office that functions as a mediator between the administration and state, tribal and local governments.“This is the first time we've had an American Indian that close to the White House, dealing with intergovernmental affairs,” said David Gipp, president of the United Tribes Technical College in Bismarck, N.D., where Gillette previously served as director of the Native American Training Institute, a tribally operated nonprofit organization.

She will be very helpful in coordinating tribal government, tribal leaders and Indian affairs across the board and all the federal agencies where there will be issues affecting tribes and Indian people,” said Gipp. “She'll be able to reach across from one agency to the next. We look forward to her coordinating meetings at the highest levels of government with some of the secretaries and also the president.”
Full story [here]

Construction ADR Tips (Middle East Specifically)
Some very good, basic tips, one of which is:

Provide for arbitration
Contracts need to include an effective dispute resolution mechanism, which may act as a deterrent to disputes. Arbitration is gaining increasing acceptance in the region and arbitration clauses are now common in many construction contracts. But don't forget that the enforcement of arbitral awards remains a challenge in certain jurisdictions, particularly in Saudi Arabia.

Read them all [here]

Biography


Jeff Thompson, Ph.D., is a professor at Lipscomb University, researcher, mediator, and trainer. He is also involved in crisis and hostage negotiation as well as a law enforcement detective. His research includes law enforcement crisis and hostage negotiation in terrorist incidents. He received his doctorate from Griffith University Law School having researched the impact nonverbal communication has in conflict situations with respect to developing rapport, building trust, and displaying professionalism.

Dr. Thompson has presented and trained on the topic of conflict, mediation, (crisis and hostage) negotiation, communication and nonverbal communication internationally for a variety of audiences including police personnel, government officials, judges, attorneys, physicians, sales people, business professionals, and both graduate and undergraduate students. He has also been published in numerous professional and academic publications.

He is the co-chair of ACR's national Crisis Negotiation Section, and he is an ad-hoc reviewer for multiple academic journals. He received his MS in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution from the Werner Institute, Creighton University School of Law.

(All posts by Jeff Thompson represent his personal reflections and opinions and not that of any organization.)



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