A developing story here in Canada has raised concerns about whether the public should have the right to know the terms of a high profile, mediated settlement agreement involving the government of Canada. The case involves now retired Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, the former number two in the Canadian military. The detailed background of the…

Let’s talk some more about mediation research. To recap, in his February 2019 post to this Blog, Michael Leathes argued for the need for more field-based research into mediation. He asked, “What if a vast range of mediation skills and techniques could be radically improved by new data derived from large-scale national and international field…

Does the currently predominant model of commercial mediation – a single session of 3 or 6 hours – support good decision-making by litigants? Some doubt is cast by recent Canadian scholarship dealing with the psychological costs of litigation. In their 2017 paper, Anticipating and Managing the Psychological Costs of Civil Litigation, authors Michaela Keet, Heather…

“Hi, I’m Rick. I’m your mediator for today. I can’t decide what happens in this dumb dispute or how you resolve issues. My job is just to help people who are incapable of resolving conflict, like yourselves, find areas that you can agree on. That means I get to control what appears in the messages,…

Recently, as I sat in a mediation room awaiting the arrival of lawyers and clients I did something I have often done for more than 20 years. I performed an ancient divination ritual. I cast the I Ching. The I Ching is an ancient Chinese oracle dating back about 3,000 years. It has provided insight…

Michael Leathes in his recent  thought provoking post argues for the need for more “field-based” mediation research by which he means actual observations of the live action by skilled researchers.  He poses the questions: “Has the mediation world spent too long developing lab-based facts to suit its theories? Might it start to hone new theories…

While The Kluwer Mediation Blog is aimed at an international audience and often deals with issues of transcendent import to those interested in the mediation process (like Bill Marsh’s recent inspiring post on Leadership) I can’t help but comment on recent Ontario decision that will be of interest to the mediation community here, and perhaps…

Let me climb off my usual soap box this month and focus on more mundane matters primarily of interest to mediators (and lawyers) in my jurisdiction. A recent decision of the Ontario Superior Court illuminates the approach a judge will take when a party calls into question the enforceability of their settlement agreement. Generally, the…