Dispute Resolution

Dispute resolution generally refers to one of several different processes used to resolve disputes between parties, including negotiation, mediation, arbitration, collaborative law, and litigation. Dispute resolution is the process of resolving a dispute or a conflict by meeting at least some of each side’s needs and addressing their interests. Dispute resolution strategies include fostering a rapport, considering interests and values separately, appealing to overarching values, and indirect confrontation.

Conflict resolution, to use another common term, is a relatively new field, emerging after World War II. Scholars from the Program on Negotiation were leaders in establishing the field.

Mediation can be effective at allowing parties to vent their feelings and fully explore their grievances. Working with parties together and sometimes separately, mediators try to help them hammer out a resolution that is sustainable, voluntary, and nonbinding. In arbitration, the arbitrator listens as each side argues its case and presents relevant evidence, then renders a binding decision. Litigation typically involves a defendant facing off against a plaintiff before either a judge or a judge and jury. The judge or jury is responsible for weighing the evidence and making a ruling. Information conveyed in hearings and trials usually enters the public record.

There are many aspects of disputes, including value creation opportunities, agency issues, organizational influences, ethical considerations, the role of law, and decision tools.

Articles offer numerous examples of dispute resolution and explore various aspects of it, including international conflict resolution, how it can be useful in your personal life, skills needed to achieve it, and training that hones those skills.

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Dispute Resolution: Uncertainty, Risk, and Opportunity in Water Diplomacy

Lawrence Susskind   •  02/09/2017   •  Filed in Dispute Resolution

dispute resolution define negotiation skills what leads to renegotiation

When countries face contending water claims, one of the biggest obstacles to reaching an agreement is uncertainty. Specifically, there are three types of uncertainty: uncertainty of information, uncertainty of action, and uncertainty of perception. In part 2 of this 5 part series, Program on Negotiation faculty member Lawrence Susskind explains the uncertainties facing negotiators trying … Read More 

What is Dispute Resolution in Law: The Ins and Outs of Arbitration

PON Staff   •  01/17/2017   •  Filed in Dispute Resolution

what is dispute resolution in law the ins and outs of arbitration

A “one-shot” form of dispute resolution, arbitration is usually faster and cheaper than litigation. In addition, rather than being assigned a judge, parties are able to select their arbitrator.

What is dispute resolution in law and how do alternative dispute resolution (ADR) methods like arbitration operate inside and outside a courtroom? Here are some examples of … Read More 

How to Negotiate with Friends and Family

PON Staff   •  01/09/2017   •  Filed in Dispute Resolution

Happy group of people, friends, family having fun together, celebrating life on the peak of the mountain. Children, parents, seniors

“Never do business with friends,” the adage goes. Yet a strict policy of keeping friends and family members out of our business lives would be impractical, and it could cause us to pass up potentially valuable negotiating opportunities.

What special issues do friends and family members face when involved in negotiations together? How can they reduce … Read More 

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