American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution Annual Conference

American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution
Stakeholder Summit
Washington, DC
April 2012

On April 19th, 2012, AmericaSpeaks facilitated a session of the 14th Annual Spring Conference of the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution.  During the session about 100 professional Mediators and Arbitrators discussed if and how they should be regulated. The session served as one of the largest single discussions of the issue within the alternative dispute resolution community.

The meeting was not intended to produce a decision as to regulation of the field, but rather to engage directly with practitioner and get a sense of their feelings toward regulation and quality control. Due to the difference in the role of mediators and arbitrators, the two groups had separate conversations and polling results throughout the session.

During the session, attendees discussed competencies needed for the professions, conditions needed to support regulation and next steps needed to develop a regulatory system and improve the quality of practice. The events included several sections of polling questions that helped to provide the ABA with a better sense of the feelings of participants, as well as data on participant reaction to the possibility of regulation. The session served as an opportunity to discuss this pressing issue within the field, as well as introduce alternative dispute resolution practitioners to the AmericaSpeaks deliberative process.

Read the preliminary report from the session here.