This week the facilitator of a conflict resolution group to which I belong posed  this question: ‘What is the greatest challenge currently facing us?’ My answer came quickly – the threat of hyper-polarization in an increasingly dangerous world. It was not particularly original or insightful of me – hyper-polarization seems to feature constantly in…

In the famous story of Noah’s Ark, Noah questions God about how he will find the animals he has been instructed to put in the ark. God replies, ‘If you build it, they will come’. The consistent repetition of this quotation throughout history (think of Kevin Costner’s movie Field of Dreams ) has created something…

Dear Young Mediation Enthusiast, Thank you for writing to me again. Time really flies as my last letter to you was written ten months ago on 2 December 2021. It is most encouraging to hear that you have been doing mediation cases of different nature and you find the work as a family mediator most…

Most people’s experience of artificial intelligence (AI) is limited to interacting with a chat bot on their bank’s website. These bots are unimpressive, dispensing trivial and mostly unhelpful answers. Don’t be misled into thinking that unhelpful chat bots represent the state of the art in AI, though. The cutting edge of AI research has moved…

Online processes in all professions soared during Covid. The legal profession was transformed. A multitude of online mediation platforms miraculously appeared and mediators barely skipped a beat. Benefits emerged – especially in a geographically vast continent like Australia – where advocates and their clients in distant locations saved significant costs in time, travelling expenses and…

As a mediator, have you ever come across a situation where the parties and their respective legal representatives insist to have a face-to-face mediation session with you against a backdrop of sudden rise of confirmed Covid cases in your city to the extent that social distancing measures are being tightened and the Judiciary has announced…

Kleros is a cryptocurrency dispute resolution platform. It uses crypto tokens and game theory to resolve real-world disputes. It follows an automated process with no discussion, no nuance, no probing questions. It seems to be at the opposite end of the dispute resolution spectrum to mediation. Yet I think there is something that mediators can…

  The Daily Blogpost from the Harvard Program on Negotiation (PON) is always a great way to start the day. A quick read, it often turns something that I have been processing at the back of my mind into a more solid idea I can inspect and explore. This week, a particularly relevant post about…

I teach an online course for lawyers to help them become more comfortable working with numbers. We spend quite a lot of time on litigation forecasting: assigning probabilities to different outcomes, combining these probabilities correctly and coming up with an overall estimated value for the claim. This is useful to frame the parameters for any…

Dear Young Mediation Enthusiast, Last December, I sent you a letter and shared three topics of mediation, namely, (1) qualifications; (2) practice and marketing; and (3) training, with you. Thank you for keeping in touch with me despite the pandemic. I am glad that you are still keen to start your mediation practice. Your further…