Raymond Williams, Resources of Hope (published posthumously in 1989), p. 118 I write and will upload this blog on the eve of my departure for Paris and the ICC’s 12th International Commercial Mediation Competition. On the ‘due date’ for this blog, I’ll be somewhere between Auckland and London. Again, it will be my huge pleasure…

I have just read Ian Macduff’s recent Kluwer blog (26 November: “Upheaval and resilience: a note from the Shaky Isles”). What a privilege it is, in this blog, to follow Ian’s erudite writing. He captures so well the spirit of the age, with all its uncertainty, tragedy, hope and opportunity. On that theme, my wife…

In the weeks since the Brexit vote and, more recently, the US Presidential elections, both of which caught pollsters, media and just about everybody you and I know by surprise, there’s a vocabulary that has become both familiar and, in New Zealand’s experience, prescient. Look over recent articles online on any major news or aggregator…

It is unusual times when the Church can be seen to be more progressive in certain matters than the State but this may actually be such a time. The UK has reached a stage in its history where polarized views and a lack of respect between the people who hold those views predominates. As the…

A few recent observations prompt this blog about language and the world of words that we work with in mediation. First, in reading around the burgeoning literature on online dispute resolution and – especially – at the algorithm-based, automated end of the scale, I note the suggestion that dispute resolution and mediation are based just…

The Olympics have come and gone with all of the emotion and inspiration they bring. In our recent, fully-subscribed, residential Summer School on mediation skills for leaders, we reflected on the learning from Rio. We watched a video replay of the men’s taekwondo -80kg final in which Team GB’s Lutalo Muhammad lost to his Ivory…

This is not a really post about Brexit; but then again I do circle some of the themes that earlier post-Brexit Kluwer bloggers have addressed, in a series of thoughtful, passionate and concerned comments. “Brexit” has become, beyond the decision and its fallout, a placekeeper for a range of other concerns, about community, tolerance, dialogue,…

  Perhaps we shouldn’t be too surprised by the whole Brexit affair. I’m not talking about the result of the vote itself, but about the referendum process, the behaviour it engendered, and its aftermath. All the classic features were present. Classic features of what? Well, of binary processes. Those that offer a win/lose, yes/no, remain/leave…

Recap Last time I wrote as a young mediator about my mediation path, I had just arrived in Tbilisi, Georgia. It was February 2014, when people began being killed at the Euromaidan on Independence Square in Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. I was trying to ‘break into the peacebuilding field‘ but did not have much…

I begin with two poetic images. One is from an 8th century Taoist poem – I asked the boy beneath the pines. He said, “The master’s gone alone Herb-picking somewhere on the mount, Cloud-hidden, whereabouts unknown.” [Chia Tao (777-841)] And the other, more recent, from W H Auden’s poem “Law Like Love”: And always the…