ACR Commercial Section

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Phone: 202.464.9700





In this edition, we have added an article about the International Chamber of Commerce’s (ICC) International Court of Arbitration written by Josefa Sicard-Mirabal, Director of Arbitration and ADR for North America. This is one of five regional offices. The others are Latin America, United Kingdom, Asia and Eastern Mediterranean, Middle East & Africa. The Secretariat is located in Paris, France. We plan to have other articles next year about the important work of the Court of Arbitration.

Prathamesh D Popat, Counsel, Arbitrator, Mediator and Founder of Prachi in Mumbai, India, has given us an insider’s view of ADR In India -- 2009. He describes recent history and the impact of the 1999 amendments to India’s Code of Civil Procedure 1908. He is optimistic about the promise ADR has for relieving the backlog of cases in India’s courts, which in the Bombay High Court stretches back to the 1980s and 1990s.

We are looking for new members to join the Commercial Section’s International Committee. Please see a summary of the ambitious plans for the committee’s activities in 2010 described in the International Committee section below.



Welcome to the first edition of the ACR Commercial Section’s International Focus webpages. This is the beginning of what we intend to be a very informative and interesting view of the dynamic field of international commercial ADR. We will add new material at the beginning of every month to keep you coming back on a regular monthly basis to find out what your colleagues around the world are doing and thinking about.

It will take a few months to build-up to the full range of offerings we have planned. I want to give special “thanks” to our members who have agreed to help coordinate this effort and to write material for the various sections. There are several articles in the pipeline and an initial cadre of volunteer coordinators. We want more!
Ultimately, the success of this initiative rests with you our fellow Commercial Section and ACR members. First, we rely on you to submit news and write articles and to encourage others to contribute as well. Second, we need you to be a frequent reader and an active participate by commenting on and adding to what is presented on these webpages. We want an active dialogue.
As you may know, ACR is in the process of converting to a new website. The transition could be completed in time for the Annual Conference in October or by the end of the year. We expect the new website will give us more capabilities and enable us to be highly interactive. More news on that as it unfolds. 
For the next several months, we will highlight news and articles that demonstrate “The Most Effective Ways to Use Mediation in International Business.” You will find two articles in this edition discussing the highly effective use of Dispute Resolution Boards for major international construction projects; one is by Peter Merrill and the other by Bob Wrede.
Please send in your experiences with and opinions about how effective mediation can be in international business situations. Either send us 300 words or less on the subject (see "Current Theme" below) or submit an article (2,000 words or less) with title and a short synopsis.
We want to know your ideas for future themes. Tell us what interests you most. Share your insights, experiences and opinions. Speak out on important issues for our profession. Expect that some or most or all of what you send us by e-mail will appear on this website, unless you tell us otherwise.
Keeping our members connected.
Frances I. Mossman
International Committee Chair, ACR Commercial Section


Nina Meierding, Mediation - Staying Culturally Relevant in a Multicultural World
Mediators working with parties from different cultural backgrounds need to be aware of the different concepts, models used and cultural practices that come into play. This is increasingly important today because of the need for effective multicultural conflict resolution throughout the world. The author points out some of the differences between the Western mediation model and belief systems followed by people in many other cultures. Lack of cultural awareness and sensitivity can lead to misunderstanding, for example, even over what the word "Yes" means. She explains why.
Josefa Sicard–Mirabal, The International Court of Arbitration®
Created in 1923, the International Court of Arbitration® (“Court”) of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) is currently the world’s leading institution for resolving international commercial and business disputes, pioneering international commercial arbitration, as it is known today. This article describes the work of the Court, as well as ICC’s various other Dispute Resolution Services. Nov. 2009

Prathamesh D PopatADR in India-2009
The article gives a brief understanding of the developments in India in the field of Dispute Resolution by discussing the recently introduced provisions in the Civil Procedure Code and other provisions relating thereto. Nov. 2009


Patricia Barclay, Mediation of IP Disputes - Worth a Shot?
The author makes a convincing case for the advantages of using mediation over litigation and arbitration in complex IP disputes. Sept. 2009


Michael Klug and Ann Taylor, A Game of Opposites: Negotiation is a Counter-Intuitive Discipline
This article discusses 10 ways that we can be induced by our instincts into adopting less than ideal negotiating styles. Sept. 2009

Luis E. Ore, Negotiating International Strategic Alliances: Building Lasting Agreements
Luis Ore explores the complexities of negotiating international strategic alliances beyond the obvious differences in language and culture. He provides guidance for negotiators, including a 7-Element Framework and the Single-Text Procedure. He emphasizes the importance of a mutual-gains negotiation
approach, agreement-building strategies and a deal-implementer mindset.  Aug. 2009

Peter G. Merrill, Expanded Dispute Review Boards and Construction Settlement Panels May Revolutionize the Construction Industry Dispute Resolution Process
Peter Merrill describes how Dispute Review Boards and Construction Settlement Panels are being used effectively in domestic and international construction projects to avoid and manage what otherwise might become costly construction disputes. Defines terminology and describes the process. Includes a flow chart of the Expanded Dispute Review Board process.  Aug. 2009

Chek Lap Kok, Hong Kong’s International Airport and one of the busiest airports in the World, is the prime example of Dispute Resolution Boards in action.  Costing more than $20b, it involved 225 construction contracts and 10 separate but interrelated projects with over 1,000 critical interfaces. “Yet incredibly, this vast, complex, multidisciplinary, transnational collaboration was completed both on time and under budget.” Mr. Wrede describes the conflict management model that was used and how it contributed to that success.  Aug. 2009
Conflict Resolution Day
Conflict Resolution Day Activities
Australia and New Zealand - LEADR Celebrates 20th Anniversary
Europe - Mediation Techniques Conpendium
Latin America - Peru and International Arbitration
Dec. 1, 2009: A teleseminar will be presented by Nina Meierding on "Communicating Across Cultures: Cross-Cultural Considerations in Mediation and Negotiation" as part of the CRD program. Click here to view the flyer.
Nov. 27-29, 2009: World Mediation Forum 7th International Conference, Margarita, Venezuela. “Mediation, Justice & Governance: An Opportunity for Peace.”
The 4th Scottish Mediation Conference will be held in Edinburgh, Scotland on February 25-26, 2010. The theme is “Strengthening Practice.” For more information and to register go to
Third Annual Mediators Beyond Borders Congress will take place on March 5-7, 2010. For more information go to
Nov. 21-27, 2010: 5th Asia-Pacific Mediation Forum, India (conference center near Delhi).
To find out about membership benefits and to become an ACR member click here or go to We are providing links for your convenience to the website addresses of other international related ADR sections and organizations with which we have a close working relationship.
International Committee News
An International Focus that Benefits Members
Finding Members
ACR's International Committee to hold January 26, 2010 Teleconference Meeting
Coming Next Month...
  • Charles Crumpton on Arbitration and training in Vietnam
  • Jose Arthur Vasconcelos on ADR in the European Union
Current Theme: “The Most Effective Ways to Use Mediation in International Business”
All members are invited to send in examples of situations where mediation proved to be particularly effective and even may have “saved the day.” All types of disputes and circumstances are encouraged to show the flexibility and diversity of mediation. Submittals will be published next month in the Member Networking section.
Send Us Your Comments!
Visit the Administration section for coordinator assignments, e-mail addresses, and guidelines on how to submit materials for specific sections. We will also publish a "Comments From Our Readers" section, so send comments on what you think about what you've read here! 

This month we have added two provocative new articles to our offerings. One is by Michael Klug and Ann Taylor about 10 ways that negotiation is counter-intuitive. The other is by Patricia Barclay on the use of mediation in complex Intellectual Property disputes. 

We have a diverse group of authors and topics coming up over the next several months from authors around the world. If you have suggestions for subjects you want to know more about and authors whose ideas you want to read, please send us an e-mail now --it’s easy.
We have news from fellow member, Jose Vasconcelos, about the 5th Annual World Conflict Resolution Day 2009 International Conference to be held on October 15 in Lisbon, Portugal.  Information about the speakers, program and how to register is provided below under "Conferences."  There is also an attendance form and link to Mediarcom for additional assistance.

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