Being a mediator brings surprises along the way. For me, I was presented with what turned out to be the biggest challenge of my professional career last November when the Cabinet Secretary for Health in Scotland appointed me to conduct a review of allegations made by staff (through whistle-blowers) of bullying and harassment in Scotland’s…

The success of international arbitration, among others, is owed to the New York Convention, which provided tools for global enforcement of arbitral awards. To that end, international mediation has been underused often because of the lack of necessary international enforcement mechanisms of mediated settlement agreements. The Singapore Convention on Enforcement of Mediated Settlement Agreements (Singapore…

Last month, we had the presence of Ahdieh (Ati) Alipour Herisi in Brazil as a judge for the occasion of the CPR International Mediation Competition . Ati is a young, enthusiastic and brilliant lawyer and mediator who was born in Iran and lived, studied and worked in many different places such as Los Angeles, New…

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…

This is the first in a short series of how parties and advisers can best deploy the “assets” at their disposal in a mediation. Naturally, it is written from my perspective as a mediator, and so I recognise that it may look different when you are representing one side in a mediation, rather than in…

Whether we are talking about arbitration, mediation or litigation, it seems that international dispute resolution systems are evolving rapidly. Think of the recent emergence of international commercial courts in ascendant global cities like Dubai and Singapore, the new UNCITRAL spotlight on reforming of investment arbitration, the United Nation’s adoption of the Singapore Convention on Mediation…

‘A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ is thought to originate from mediaeval falconry! There are a number of variations on the theme – apparently in central Europe the saying is ‘a sparrow in the hand is worth a pigeon on the roof’! A number of cognitive biases are at play…

This post, the second of a two-part series, examines further potential problems of implementing the Singapore Mediation Convention in China and proposes corresponding solutions. The first post in this series considered three potential problems and this second post examines four further potential problems. 4. The SPC should establish an annual reporting system for cases pertaining…

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…