I wrote this piece for Strathclyde Mediation Clinic after a series of conversations with new and learner mediators. Some surprised me with their passivity in the face of parties’ lack of knowledge or understanding. After some probing I learned that many new mediators recognise the problem but believe the model they were taught prohibits them…

Students make wonderful teachers. Some of the ‘aha’ moments I value most have come from debriefing de-identified mediation challenges (particularly the most painful ones) with my class – listening and learning as they unpick my stories of ‘successes’ and ‘failures’. It is a gift I look forward to receiving with each new group of students….

The importance of gaze

‘Because you’re distant, forgive me for being a little bit bossy’ (Paddy O’Connell, BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House) After plying their trade for a while mediators (and broadcasters) develop a persona, not so much bolted on as inhabited. Once in ‘the chair,’ voice, posture and gestures all coalesce to support their purpose and, with minimal…

Following up on a series of posts initiated last March associated to the Brazilian General Data Protection Act, the following article is co-authored by Gustavo Carneiro, a dear friend and expert on the subject matter. The Brazilian General Data Protection Act, which will come into force next August, sets up principles, duties and rights to…

One of the positive aspects of the enforced changes brought about by lockdown is that it enables – or compels – us to try new things. So far, I’ve learned how to create and have issued 13 podcasts, the idea being to spread ideas as widely as possible at this crucial time. After much procrastination,…

Do Black Lives Matter

“Racially discriminatory behavior may be reduced more effectively when racial issues are made salient rather than ignored or obscured.” (1) This week I’ve been thinking about white privilege. Ok, my white privilege. Like much of the planet I was horrified by the casual, almost routine asphyxiation of George Floyd. I wasn’t surprised by protest and…

“Value will change in the post-covid world. On one level, that’s obvious: valuations in global financial markets have imploded, with many suffering their sharpest declines in decades. More fundamentally, the traditional drivers of value have been shaken, new ones will gain prominence, and there’s a possibility that the gulf between what markets value and what people…

Ten weeks ago, I had barely heard of Zoom. At that time, I was fairly sceptical about online mediation in the kind of cases I do. It could never substitute for face to face meetings with their intimacy and candour. Or so I thought. I have recently undertaken a number of mediations using Zoom. It…

In lock-down it can be a challenge to differentiate one day from the next. We’ve all been a bit less fastidious with our general presentation and dress and we have become very used to the domestic backdrop we observe as we Zoom with colleagues and clients. One of the things I wisely grabbed as we…

Recap: The Alchemy of Mediation, Part 1: actions to outcomes training exercise In this part we explored what little information, context and insight the actions of each of us provide for the other. In our example, it seems that while we were each comfortable with doing what the other did in the morning (the actions),…