A recent series of storms flooded a set of newly renovated buildings owned by developer Bob Bonsetta. At first, Bonsetta was very happy with the completed renovations, especially the new basement units. The flood damage changed that. Bonsetta is suing the architect, Frank Farrell, for losses and repair costs, on the ground that the catastrophe should have been foreseen.
The general contractor who conceivably could share the blame with Farrell has declared bankruptcy. Farrell believes that the contractor is responsible for not checking up on the flood potential of the property, especially the newly added basement units. He also claims that the contractor's shoddy work is indicated by discoloration in the unflooded bathrooms. The two parties have agreed to a mediation in hopes of avoiding an expensive trial.
This case tests a mediator's skill at information gathering and reality-testing.
Public opinion of both parties is vital for their future business dealings.
The contractor's bankruptcy adds an interesting twist to the mediation, since the third party is removed from financial responsibility.
Prof. Susskind’s Top 5 Environmental Negotiation Teaching Materials
From time to time, the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center asks PON-affiliated faculty to nominate their top five books, top five teaching videos or top five role-play simulations in certain fields or teaching settings. These change periodically.