Scotland is a practical nation. The list of its inventions includes penicillin, anaesthetics, steam engines, tarmac roads and even the decimal point (see http://www.magicdragon.com/Wallace/thingscot.html#Ta). Like the rest of the UK its culture was in part forged by the ‘practical man’ of the Industrial Revolution, rejecting grand theory in favour of trial and error. Its lawyers,…

It is often said that listening is one of a mediator’s core skills. At the same time the parties’ ability to listen to each other is equally important. Where parties’ communication has broken down to such an extent that they are unable to really hear what each other is saying, mediators can step in and…

Since April 2005 there have been two structural provisions for referral to mediation: via the Legal Desk and via the Judiciary. Besides, conflicting parties can start mediation on their own initiative or after referral by other bodies. Other referring bodies comprise, for instance, occupational health and safety services, social services, youth services, the police, social…

He was a widower and a grandfather. He arrived at the mediation with his attorney and one of his adult daughters for moral support. The trial date loomed, and the judge had urged both sides to come to the table to settle this tort case. After the accident, he could no longer babysit his grandchildren…

It is a fact of life that lawyers will be involved in many mediations, particularly where they involve litigation matters. Despite initial reluctance to embrace mediation, the tide is turning as Sabine Walsh explains in her posting, Of Turkeys and Christmas – The Role of Lawyers in Mediation. A specialised form of legal practice is…

I have just recently received an arbitral award for a client that resolved a construction dispute which had arisen more than five years ago. Unfortunately, such time frame is not exceptional. Litigation would probably not have lasted any shorter. Construction disputes are usually complex and tend to involve stacks of documents. Such disputes often involve…

Our local mediator’s association here in the Northwest of Ireland recently ran a public seminar on mediation and the future of alternative dispute resolution. The two keynote speakers were two very distinguished lawyers, a High Court Judge and a Senior Barrister. As I looked around the room, it struck me just how many lawyers were…

In my capacity as a trainer and educator of mediators, I am frequently asked about entry into the mediation profession: “Once I pass my accreditation assessment, I want to become a full-time mediator…” The mediation training market continues to boom, confirming a continuing strong interest in mediation as a career path. However the supply of…

The term “ADR” is certainly familiar to not just those of us in the teaching and practice of mediation, but legal practitioners as well. In this post, I want to share some thoughts about the evolving nature of the “A” in ADR and how this is both reflective of the changes that have occurred in…

In a previous post I had noted the absence of better inter-connection between the ICC ADR Rules (available at http://www.iccwbo.org/court/adr/id4452/index.html) and the new ICC Arbitration Rules (available at http://www.iccwbo.org/court/arbitration/id4424/index.html) although the latter now open the door, at an early stage of the arbitration proceedings (i.e. the Case Management Conference: Art. 24 para. 1 of the…