One year ago, on the 1 September 2012, The Kluwer Mediation Blog was launched with an inaugural posting by the then Minister for Justice in Slovenia, Ales Zalar. Right from the start, Ales challenged readers by offering fresh thinking about political applications of mediation: “Mediation stands for more democracy, which we all need, because it…

Mediators often talk about the power of framing their own language and reframing the language of parties and others in mediation settings. For example, mediators may frame their comments in neutral, constructive and future-focused language. They may reframe party statements to detoxify offensive or destructive language or to create a shift from the negative to…

The first mediation course is a special moment that each of us holds in our hearts and it represents the foundation of every mediator. The transformational process that we all go through during our training as mediators is materialized by the change in our attitude towards conflict and how to solve them. When we go…

Professions (and hence professionals) are both blessed and cursed with high expectations. The upside is clear: the public expects high standards, expertise and care, and in return is prepared to pay handsomely. The downside typically involves disciplinary sanctions against those not measuring up to those standards, although issues of probity rather than competence tend to…

Part of my June was spent preparing for and being involved in a peer mediation initiative in Singapore called Peacemakers. This project was first run in 2010 and had as its purpose the goal of bringing the ideas of mediation and collaborative problem solving to young people. This initiative saw students (aged between 13 to…

Looking back over my previous blog posts it strikes me that I’ve been throwing the term integration around a fair bit in the context of dispute resolution and mediation, in particular. The term “alternative dispute resolution” has always sat somewhat uneasily with me. While it is of course a correct description, as the procedures it…

In this post I want to talk about an important thread that is emerging in the science of the twenty-first century. It is the finding that we are all interconnected, that we are porous beings with the ability to influence not only ourselves but one another in ways not previously contemplated. What we previously knew…

This month I want to share with you a little gem of a mediation book, published late last year by the Irish state-funded Family Mediation Service (FMS). I wanted to review this book for two reasons – first of all, because it is an excellent publication which, though written in the context of the 25th…

As you would expect, judges are appointed for their ability to adjudicate, often untested at the time of elevation to the Bench. Once appointed, many jurisdictions around the world then ask their judges to suspend their adjudication skills in favour of mediating controversies coming before the court, often in an effort to reduce backlogs. And it seems…