Online ADR

Theories of Change: a valuable new contribution to Dispute Resolution field made freely available

John Lande, University of Missouri School of Law, Isidor Loeb Professor Emeritus has painstakingly solicited, collected and organized the book in to an interesteing, far-reaching, and thought provoking book that asks each of us in the field to consider what we might be doing better. He has collected a series of essays from over fifty professionals in the field, taking on this assessment of what the future of our field may hold.

Feel free to share this book with others who you think might be interested. John has graciously invited all of us to do this, and has made it a free download. Here is the link to this valuable resource to add to your collection, Theories of Change for the Dispute Resolution Movement: Actionable Ideas to Revitalize Our Movement.

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Students are the future of our field, and this may attract them to our community. So  the book should be shared widely with them as well.

The book is the result of the Theory of Change Symposium, organized by John in 2019. Here’s a post with an index of all the contributions to this symposium.

Included are several pieces describing important techniques to improve dispute resolution practice.  Rosa Abdelnour describes the importance of dealing with emotions in mediation, which may seem obvious, but it bears repeating as many mediators act as if emotions are irrelevant.  Noah Hanft argues that when businesses negotiate contracts, they should put the subject of developing good relationships on the agenda as an intrinsic part of the negotiation from the outset.  In one piece, Michaela Keet, Heather Heavin, and John Lande recommend that practitioners explicitly help parties consider valuable but hard-to-quantify intangible costs of engaging in the litigation process.  In another piece, they recommend a “planned early two-stage mediation” (PETSM) process to improve the quality of parties’ decision-making.  Laurel Tuvim Amaya describes the benefits of participating in reflective practice groups that challenge practitioners to seriously analyze difficult problems in their cases.

Some pieces take on “big picture” issues in our field.  Charlie Irvine urges us to take seriously substantive justice – not just procedural justice or other goals of dispute resolution.  Grande Lum describes why negotiation is especially important to deal with the major social divisions.  Rachel Viscomi suggests that we can use online resources to help bridge deep differences in our society.  Woody Mosten describes several ways that mediation trainings can improve the quality of mediation and include more peacemaking in our work.  Chris Draper envisions possible future uses of technology to promote collaborative justice in dispute resolution.  Lara Fowler suggests ways that the dispute resolution community can help address the existential threat to our planet of climate change.

Two pieces are reminders to take advantage of the Stone Soup Project, geared to faculty resources. The Stone Soup website has everything faculty need to give students great learning experiences through encounters with the real world.  Another piece describes how, with a little bit of extra effort, speakers at educational programs can generate new knowledge by systematically tapping the experiences and perspectives of audience members.

This book has lots of ideas, but no specific plans or suggestions to take any actions. This is left up to the reader to consider and inplement. John does suggest that members of the ADR community would most likely need to undertake some collaborative actions in order to implement the collective suggested changes.

John kindly synthesized the many suggestions in the book into the following broad recommendations:

        • Develop clearer common language of dispute resolution
        • Redefine what we do and who we are
        • Integrate technology into all our work
        • Develop best practice standards
        • Redesign teaching and training curricula
        • Develop and implement a research agenda
        • Develop a searchable dispute resolution bibliographic database
        • Engage the major issues of our times with realistic plans and expectations
        • Attract “all hands on deck”
        • Unbundle and prioritize our lives

As you will see, there’s quite a range of people speaking with very different voices. They are Rosa Abdelnour, Ava Abramowitz, Jim Alfini, Cynthia Alkon, Laurie Amaya, Lisa Amsler, Peter Benner, Debra Berman, Russ Bleemer, Michael Buenger, Alyson Carrel, Sarah Cole, Ben Cook, Chris Draper, Noam Ebner, Deb Eisenberg, Brian Farkas, Lara Fowler, Doug Frenkel, Steve Goldberg, Rebekah Gordon, Michael Green, Jill Gross, Chris Guthrie, Noah Hanft, Heather Heavin, David Henry, Howard Herman, Chris Honeyman, Charlie Irvine, Barney Jordaan, Jane Juliano, Michaela Keet, Randy Kiser, Russell Korobkin, Heather Kulp, John Lande, Michael Lang, Lela Love, Grande Lum, Andrew Mamo, Scott Maravilla, Woody Mosten, Jackie Nolan-Haley, Lydia Nussbaum, Rebecca Price, Nancy Rogers, Colin Rule, Amy Schmitz, Linda Seely, Donna Shestowsky, Jean Sternlight, Donna Stienstra, Tom Valenti, Rachel Viscomi, Nancy Welsh, Roselle Wissler, Doug Yarn.

Finally, if you don’t already subscribe to the Indisputably blog, I encourage you to do so. It is intended to link Dispute Resolution Scholarship, Education, and Practice.  There, you will find a range of interesting posts about various aspects of dispute resolution.

Join us for a Cyberweek Webinar – “Online tools in arbitration: A chance for lawyers and arbitrators to update skills” on Wednesday, November 2nd @ 12:00pm Eastern

Program Description

“In a time where there is widespread criticism of arbitration as too costly, and takes too long, Arbitrators need to distinguish themselves from the rest of the field by updating their skill set.  This one hour webinar will show you how to use an online tool that brings added value to your practice to make dispute resolution processes more efficient. This webinar will show how an arbitrator can expedite the arbitration process by using a simple low cost online tool to take testimony from a witness, allowing him to share documents, draw on photographs and show videos, and to illustrate his expert testimony. This can be done with everyone in different locations and using different devices. All of this can be video recorded and shared creating an instant record at no additional cost. Attendees will learn basic techniques and will see a video demonstrating the simplicity of the tool. Following this there will be a Q&A session.”

Register here

Video Recording of “Online Tools for Arbitration”– Free Webinar – September 14, 2016 – (30-Minutes)

Recording Presented by Thomas P. Valenti in conjunction with Giuseppe Leone, founder of Virtual Mediation Lab, this webinar showed how arbitration tasks typically done face to face can now easily be done online, resulting in considerable time and cost savings.

We had people sign up from the following countries/cities/places: Spain, India, Greece London Florida, Hawaii, Macedonia, Czech Republic, Greece,
Karnataka, India, United Kingdom, Oklahoma, Arizona, Philippines
Ukraine, Illinois, Afghanistan, Canada, & Washington

We walk through a typical arbitration – from beginning to end – and showed how, especially in complex and international cases, some tasks can be performed more efficiently online – as shown in the video below.

Online Tools for Arbitration – Free 30-Min. Webinar – September 14, 2016


Learn how arbitration tasks typically done face to face can now easily be done online, resulting in considerable time and cost savings.

This webinar will be presented by Thomas P. Valenti, in conjunction with Giuseppe Leone, founder of Virtual Mediation Lab, a project sponsored by ACR Hawaii.

Mr. Valenti is an Attorney, Arbitrator, Facilitator and Trainer. His law practice has included representing many clients in arbitration. In addition he served as an Arbitrator on panels with the American Arbitration Association (AAA) as well as serving as a public arbitrator for theFinancial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). He is also a Chartered Arbitrator with theChartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb).

You will walk thru a typical arbitration – from beginning to end – and learn how some tasks can be performed more efficiently online, especially in complex and international cases.

This free 30-min. webinar:

  • Is intended for arbitrators, parties and their legal representatives
  • Can be joined by PC, MAC, iPad, iPhone, Android tablet or smartphone
  • Will take place Wednesday, September 14, 2016 at Noon EST (9:00am Pacific Time, 11:00am Central Time, 5:00pm London, UK Time)

Please fill out this Online Registration Form