The Street of a Thousand Blossoms by Gail Tsukiyama tells the story of a family living in Tokyo over 30 years. Two brothers, one a sumo wrestler and the other a maker of Noh theater masks, are forced to adapt their lives to changes in society in order to succeed in their traditional professions. In an…

I write this in the aftermath of yet another mediation in which the protagonists exhibited symptoms of having been seriously traumatised by the litigation process to which they had been exposed. Depression, suicidal thoughts, anger, loathing, destroyed relationships, large amounts of money spent with no discernible value. And this was a commercial situation, not a…

Covid is the gift that keeps on giving. It has provided a wonderful focus for blame that has let us off the hook for a lot of things. It has coincided with significant changes in our mediation experiences and again has been seized on as the culprit when mediation sessions go ‘off piste’. The new…

Just recently (November 4th), hackers attacked Brazil’s Superior Court of Justice (Superior Tribunal de Justiça – STJ). Not only they had access to the Court’s system and encrypted its entire database but also demanded ransom money to restore it. In other words, they succeeded in hacking one of the most centralized courts in the Brazilian…

In 2015, I retired as an American law professor. For most of my career, I used some of the basic concepts of our field such as negotiation, BATNA, positional vs. interest-based negotiation, and facilitative vs. evaluative mediation. I wasn’t always comfortable with these terms, but I used them because I couldn’t imagine shifting to alternatives….

Interest is growing in the use of mediation for investor-state disputes. Recent webinars on investor-state mediation (including SIDRA’s recent webinar) have explored ICSID’s new investor-state mediation rules, the role of the Singapore Convention for investor-state mediation and the need for further domestic legislation on mediation. Discussions at these virtual conferences have also emphasised the importance…

The introduction of the Singapore Convention on Mediation (SCM) last year has intensified the long-standing debate on professional mediator standards. A previous blog post called for China to streamline its legislation on commercial mediation, and another spoke of the prospects of proliferating and harmonizing standards in the Middle East. The idea of a global mediator…

Settlement agreements reached through mediation are mere contracts and not court decisions. As such, and in the absence of a statutory framework, enforcement of mediated settlements can only be carried out voluntarily by the parties. Failing which, the aggrieved party must enter into a court or arbitral process through which the defaulting party is compelled…

I say regularly that students make the best teachers. My students continue to prove me right. In my recent ADR program I confessed to my undergraduate students that having a conversation about culture was something that made me very anxious. I feel poorly prepared and I fear, with the best intentions, causing offence and appearing…

Hot off the heels of the Singapore Convention, The Singapore International Mediation Centre (SIMC) and the Japan International Mediation Center (JIMC) on 12 September 2020 signed a Memorandum of Understanding to operate a joint protocol that provides cross-border businesses, including companies along the Singapore-Japan corridor, with an economical, expedited and effective route for resolving commercial…