A JAMS delegation traveled to Hong Kong in May to participate in the fourth Shanghai-Hong Kong Commercial Mediation Forum, a seminal event that provides a platform for exchanges and contacts between mediators in mainland China, Hong Kong, and elsewhere in the world.
At the event, which was organized by the Shanghai Commercial Mediation Center, the Joint Mediation Helpline Office and the Hong Kong Mediation Council, participants learned about international trends and opportunities in the rapidly changing world of alternative dispute resolution.
There, as JAMS’ director of international operations, I had the opportunity to share the latest changes and developments in U.S. mediation.
Navigating the United States’ approach to mediation can be tricky for international firms as there is no uniform approach. The process often is adapted depending on the clients’ needs and shaped by constantly evolving regulations, cost concerns and the expertise of an individual case’s lawyers or mediators.
During the forum, we dove into the rise of third-party funding and its effects on mediation and settlements. Even though third-party funders often are not at the mediation table, they can have a substantial impact on proceedings and a case’s ultimate settlement. We also explored the implications of, among other projects, the One Belt and One Road Initiative, China’s massive infrastructure plan, on dispute resolution.
And I shared JAMS’ vision for international cooperation going forward, which includes finding additional opportunities to share information and collaborate through initiatives and events such as May’s forum in Hong Kong; identify and resolve any cultural and systemic barriers; and promote the best use of mediation and other forms of dispute resolution.