Bridging Divides Negotiation, Mediation, Systems Design & Dialogue

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Fallacies Underlying Common ADR Career Advice Given to Young Professionals

This is the first in a five-part blog series on advice to law students and young professionals interested in ADR as a career. The series is intended to examine the fallacies our students often hear, and to give us tools for both combating the fallacies and responding with more positive advice. Comments are welcomed!… More

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Criteria Can Solve a Problem, but Delay a Difficult Conversation

By Prof. Robert C. Bordone   In recent months, the world has been transfixed by the ongoing struggle of migrants and refugees pouring into Europe in search of a better life. The flow of untold migrants into Europe has plunged the continent into a crisis it has not seen since the end of World War… More

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Searching for a leader, not just a general

By Robert C. Bordone & Sara del Nido Listening to the language that most Presidential candidates have regularly been using in their speeches, it’s hard not to have a bunker mentality: battles, wars, and fights seem to be all around us. From Hillary Clinton to Donald Trump, nearly all the current candidates have engaged in… More

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Reimagining Adjudication: ADR as a Laboratory

Ferguson. Staten Island. Cleveland. A national outcry against police brutality. A resounding call that Black Lives Matter. Not a moment, but a movement, to question the legal system: its actors, its tools, and its available remedies. Responding to this cry for systemic revision, Harvard Law School Dean Martha Minow and Yale Law School Dean Robert… More

Monday, April 20, 2015

What Wondrous Love is This? Reflections on the Role of Love in Solidarity Work in Palestine and the United States

“We came here to Palestine to stand in love and revolutionary struggle with our brothers and sisters. We come to a land that has been stolen by greed and destroyed by hate. We come here and we learn laws that have been cosigned in ink but written in the blood of the innocent. And we… More

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Positionalism Fuels Fire in Family Court

May* never wanted to see her ex-girlfriend Jacki again, so she initiated the process of taking out a restraining order against her. After filing an initial petition with the family court, May obtained a temporary no contact order, prohibiting Jacki from going near her or talking to her, even through an intermediary. A tumultuous one-year… More

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Bargaining in the Shadow of #47Traitors

Does one always bargain in the shadow of betrayal? Indisputably, parties to a negotiation are often concerned with deception. This looming fear creates a desire for trust, and as a direct result, parties might engage in certain behaviors in order to communicate their trustworthiness. However, this tactic can also serve as a façade for betrayal’s… More

Friday, March 27, 2015

Personalizing the Public Narrative

When I look at the LGBTQ and Christian communities, they seem to be at opposite ends of a chasm. It’s difficult to escape the narrative that LGBTQ protections are Christian suppression and Christian protections are LGBTQ suppression. This dichotomy goes back to at least the 1970’s, when Anita Bryant’s famed Save Our Children campaign threatened… More

Thursday, March 5, 2015

A Prescription for Better Communication

As the daughter of a surgeon, I grew up hearing about life in the halls of a hospital. My father worked long hours, but never tired of recounting the day’s (usually hectic) events to me and my siblings. On many occasions, his stories would end with the same conclusion: the most important trait of a… More

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Power, Protests, and Problem-Solving

As a first-year law student, I was only a few months into my training in alternative dispute resolution (ADR) when the grand jury decisions on the deaths of Mike Brown and Eric Gardner were announced. I had spent the last several months with Harvard Negotiators, a student practice organization focused on ADR, learning about active… More

Monday, February 2, 2015

The Mediator as Advocate

The view of the mediator as a process facilitator who “must be neutral with respect to negotiated outcomes” appears to underpin much of the tension between dispute resolution and advocacy explored in Professor Bordone’s earlier blog. Professor Joseph Stulberg, among others, thoughtfully and forcefully argues that “a mediator must be neutral because justice demands it.”… More

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Working with “America’s Peacemaker” During Riots

Over the past several months, the deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and others at the hands of law enforcement have sparked movements across the country, bringing to the surface deeply embedded systems of privilege and oppression. Although these events were not unique, they are serving as a catalyst for change, with effects rippling throughout… More

Friday, January 16, 2015

Isn’t Activism Supposed to Give Me a Voice?

I was in the midst of protest and had never felt more disempowered. Wasn’t activism supposed to give me a voice? In that moment, it did not. I left the march feeling silenced and small. I felt as though my impact, my work, and my aspirations were meaningless in the context of “real struggle.” And… More

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A Protest of Your Own Convictions

The Garner and Brown grand jury decisions heralded into the spotlight the language of #BlackLivesMatter, #HandsUpDontShoot and #ICantBreathe. Emblazed on posters, twitter, and many of our psyches, these were not responses to a unique social and political moment, but rather the headlines of a movement generations in the making. As Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) professionals,… More

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Dialogue and Demonstration: An Introduction

Like many of my colleagues in the conflict management field across the country, I have spent significant time over the last weeks and months asking myself questions about who we are as dispute resolvers, negotiators, and mediators. What tools do we bring to the cause of advancing peace and justice? What skills, concepts, and insights… More

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Giving Thanks to (Facilitation) Students

This fall semester was a notable one for both of us, for different reasons and motivated by different circumstances. Bob is preparing to take his first sabbatical after sixteen years of continuous teaching in both semesters; by contrast, Rachel embarked upon teaching her first law school class. For entirely different reasons then, both of us… More

Friday, November 21, 2014

Pope Francis: The Great Negotiator

The recent Vatican synod on the family was not the first time Catholic Church leaders came together to discuss a controversial issue of importance in Church doctrine. But it was the first time Pope Francis oversaw such a meeting—and what happened during the synod revealed a great deal about his negotiation style and attitude towards… More

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Pew Polls and the Polarization of America

An NPR article appeared in my Facebook feed recently about a new Pew poll on religion and politics. After reading the article I realized that I had participated over the phone in a beta version of this very poll, about two months ago. As I read the article, I was brought back to my experience… More

Friday, October 24, 2014

Preparing Future Generations to Negotiate the US-China Relationship

The imbalance is startling: approximately 17 times the number of university-aged students from the PRC studied in the US last year as compared against the number of American students studying in China. This might not surprise, as China is home to at least 1.4 billion citizens, but the emphasis in China on learning English in… More

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Absent Party in NYU’s Expansion Plan: A Dispute Systems Designer

The past fifteen years have witnessed massive expansion, growth, and re-development throughout New York City – from Williamsburg and Prospect Park in Brooklyn to Times Square and the Meatpacking District in Manhattan. If a court decision on October 14 holds, Greenwich Village will become the latest neighborhood slated for a makeover. Last Tuesday, New York… More

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