A Discussion with Frank Sander about the Multi-Door Courthouse Concept

The multi-door courthouse concept - a revolutionary approach to dispute resolution from a founder of the alternative dispute resolution field

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A Discussion with Frank Sander about the Multi-Door Courthouse Concept

Multi-door courthouse and the benefit negotiation brings to litigation

As a collaboration between UST School of Law and the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, the following is the transcript of a conversation between the creator of the multi-door courthouse, Harvard Law Professor Frank E.A. Sander, and the executive director and founder of the University of St. Thomas (UST) International ADR [Alternative Dispute Resolution] Research Network, Professor Mariana Hernandez Crespo.


Click here to download your copy of International Negotiations: Cross-Cultural Communication Skills for International Business Executives from
 the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.


The Multi-Door Courthouse and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

The UST International ADR Research Network is a research program designed to create inclusive problem-solving models that utilize social capital and consensus-building techniques (i.e., dispute-resolution processes that include the voices of all stakeholders, especially the disenfranchised members of a community). In a pilot project in Brazil, participants examined the different options available to maximize the dispute-resolution process, including the multi-door courthouse conceived by Frank Sander.

The multi-door courthouse is an innovative institution that routes incoming court cases to the most appropriate methods of dispute resolution, which saves time and money for both the courts and the participants or litigants (for more information on how the multi-door courthouse concept works in practice in ADR, see also Bringing Mediators to the Bargaining Table). In our Brazilian pilot project, participants met in a virtual forum following the consensus-building methodology designed by Professor Lawrence Susskind of MIT and Harvard Law School. The project was implemented under the direction of Professor Hernandez Crespo, together with a team of Brazilians, global experts and collaborators.

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Related Dispute Resolution Article: How to Resolve Intercultural Conflict – Overcoming Cultural Barriers at the Bargaining Table – Don’t let disparate cultural backgrounds hinder negotiators from achieving a negotiated agreement – here are some negotiation tips for overcoming barriers to communication and agreement at the negotiation table.

Related International Negotiation Article: Famous Negotiators – Tony Blair’s 10 Principles for International Conflict Resolution – How former British Prime Minister Tony Blair resolved conflicts on the international stage using negotiation skills drawn from both diplomacy and business. Use these negotiating skills and accompanying negotiation strategies to achieve success at the bargaining table when attempting to resolve intercultural conflicts.


Click here to download your copy of International Negotiations: Cross-Cultural Communication Skills for International Business Executives from
 the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.


Originally published in 2010.

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