(7/10/14)L. Randolph Lowry
Randy Lowry discusses how some have been resistant to mediation education, but how it has been successful in changing legal processes and preventing litigation.
Frank Sander reflects on his concerns within the field, which include the tension of quality vs. quantity of the practice, the lack of studies of cost effectiveness, disappointments with the court system fees, and the difficulty of getting more young people/apprentices into the field. However, he's optimistic about the future of mediation.
Chris Moore shares a piece of a Robert Frost poem which he thinks represents the essence of mediation: finding a common good among people with different interests and different needs.
Sid Lezak talks about how he viewed the field when he first started out. It was like a 'religion' for him and any opposition or criticism made him even more dedicated to the practice and advocacy of mediation.
This article dramatizes the central role played by ADR in the everyday life of a civil law practitioner. The article is set in the context of a "day-in-the-life" of a hypothetical civil litigator. The purpose of the article is to focus on the pervasive and critical role played by ADR in civil law practice.
Juliana Birkhoff explains how her dissertation demonstrates mediation is in fact a field and that what is uniting among experienced mediators is the concept of power.
Frank Sander speaks of three phases he's noticed in ADR: the Pound Conference followed by ten years of experimentation. The next ten years was the incorporation and practice in law schools and court systems as well as discovering the weaknesses of the practice. The last ten years have been the institutionalization of the field.
(5/15/14)Donald T. Saposnek
Don Saposnek describes how different mediation models, while they may have different qualities and values, are often blended together by experienced mediators.
Bob Rhudy and MACRO have given the conflict resolution field a priceless gift. Mr. Rhudy has written an exhaustive, well-researched, study on the options for getting a job as a mediator. Are there jobs existing or pending to be filled proportionate to the number of career aspirants? What are the career trends in this field? How can you get such a job and make your way into conflict resolution work?
(4/22/14)Douglas Frenkel, James Stark
The use of mediation has grown exponentially in recent years, yet the field of mediation still operates to a considerable extent on folklore and opinion, rather than reliable knowledge. Mediator attempts at persuasion are pervasive in some mediation contexts, while "persuasion" is, for some, a pejorative word and a contested norm in the field. Perhaps as a result, there has been little, if any, evidence-based writing about what kinds of persuasive appeals might be effective in mediation. In an effort to begin to fill that void, this article examines empirical research on persuasion from such diverse fields as advertising, public health, communications, politics and race relations. The article then raises questions about how these social science findings might apply to the work of mediators.
I recently had the pleasure of writing a paper with my student-turned-teacher, Jeff Thompson (an alumnus of our Negotiation and Dispute Resolution program at Creighton and the Wizard Behind the Curtain at ADRHub). Jeff works on non-verbal communication in mediation, and is also in involved in ODR. Putting those together with my own interest in the role of trust in ODR, we mapped out some issues at the juxtaposition of trust, non-verbal communication and online, video-based, mediation. You can read this article, soon to appear in the International Journal of Online Dispute Resolution, here.
(4/14/14)Jack Goetz, Jennifer Kalfsbeek
Recognized professions are occupations that: 1) serve the public, 2) possess common ethical codes, 3) self-regulate, 4) require specialized education, and 5) possess authority. Mediation does not meet this sociological definition, yet mediators oftentimes see themselves as “professionals.” Public accountability needs have steered court mediator panels in the United States to establish some requirements resembling those of formalized professions, and market forces are driving litigated-case mediation, as a sub-set of the entire mediation field, towards professionalization. These factors, and greater efficiency in the use of public resources, suggest that society would benefit from professionalizing litigated-case and court-connected mediation practice.
After 18 years as CEO of Mediate.com, I know the answer to "Why Mediate.com?" Our purpose from the beginning has been to both reflect and drive the development of valuable mediation services on a global scale.
Dick Salem passed away on March 22, 2014 due to complications from a stroke. He was a mediation pioneer whose career took him from the city desk at the Washington Post to mediating high profile civil rights cases as the Midwest Regional Director of the U.S. Department of Justice Community Relations Service. He was also my father, and I know that it was a distinct privilege for him to serve our field for more than 40 years.
The arc of a litigated case has many narratives, particularly when it comes to settlement opportunities. While some cases fall into standard, often repeated formulas, others cannot be scripted. Yet, there are moments in the cycle of a case where some litigators simply react to events as they unfold rather than actively creating the settlement drama. The drama of a case is like storytelling in a trial, where events unfold in front of an audience of people who are in a position to evaluate and put a price on the story. Knowing what scripts are available in advance will assist in being less reactive and more resilient in achieving a better process and successful resolution.
(2/07/14)Constantin-Adi Gavrila, Christian Radu Chereji
Presenting recently the results of the study on ‘Rebooting’ the Mediation Directive, Giuseppe de Palo talked about the “European Union mediation paradox” – the existence of a “highly acclaimed, efficient, effective process that very few people use”, in his own words – and the need of “rebooting” the implementation of mediation process in the EU in the light of the limited effects of current legislation upon the number of civil cases mediated.
Mediate.com is ranked the top mediation and dispute resolution website by Alexa in its February 1, 2014 global website rankings. In business since 1996, Mediate.com has over 15,000 searchable mediation articles, blog posts, news items and videos. Mediate.com also hosts the most used mediator directory and offers mobile friendly website development, professional promotional services and cloud-based case management systems.
(1/23/14)Michael Leathes, Deborah Masucci
ADR is sleepwalking globally. It needs to be shaken out of its slumber. There is a way to do it. A truly Global Pound Conference!
Personal injury law is far more complicated in application than many people might believe. The title of this piece is thus phrased as a question because… frankly… I don’t know the answer. This article discusses the future of the mediation field.
Mediation in our country is no more a toddler. It has started to have an identity and it is time that we devise a cohesive plan for the growth of mediation in a manner that would allow cohesion among the stakeholders in the process. Changing the mind set of all concerned is now essential to take stock of where mediation is heading and what is to be done.
I find myself regularly asked “what do I need to do to become a mediator?” While I do not pretend to have all of the answers, here are some suggestions for beginning your journey.
Preparing a Mediator’s Check List (“MCL”) of Key Legal and Factual Issues will assist the Mediator to focus on the issues she must master during the Mediation Process (“MP”) to facilitate a voluntary settlement of the dispute.
Crisis grips the California court system.
In Los Angeles County, budget cutbacks
have forced the courts to do away
with court reporters, reduce clerical staff,
close 10 courthouses, and assign personal injury
cases to a master trial calendar system.
At a time when ADR might be considered
one of the solutions for relieving
the increased burdens on the civil trial
courts that these changes will impose, the
Superior Court in Los Angeles instead
took the surprising step of closing its
entire court-connected ADR program.
Key results from national research into internal mediation services in the UK. What you need to do to get the most from your service.
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Someone said, perfection is the enemy of good and great. What I don’t like about perfection is that it can hold-up progress when it comes to mediation marketing. How many times have you asked a client to look inside and find the best person they can be? Perhaps it is time to do the same with your mediation marketing.