One size fits all?
Douglas E. Noll, the author of the article (below) “A theory of mediation,” presents four pillars of mediation theory:
• Conflict goals
• Level of conflict escalation
• Mediation style or process
• Outcome
Then he suggests that “This theory appears to reconcile and justify all of the diverging views of practice and outcome into a unified view of mediation…then states a theory of mediation encompassing them all.”
Case Assignment
Please read: Noll, D. E. (2001). A theory of mediation. Dispute Resolution Journal; New York; May-Jul 2001. Abstract: There is no lack of debate in the field of mediation. Topics that tend to attract the most attention and vigorous discussion include mediator qualification and process outcome. What is lacking is a practical theory that would bring together different views, and help both practitioners and clients. Existing literature is reviewed to form a simple mediation theory founded on basic conflict dynamics. This theory provides a framework for explaining various mediation styles and outcomes – when a certain approach is appropriate and why.
After carefully reading through the required reading material, and this article, please answer (in about 3 full text pages), the following questions:
1. What are the major points of the author’s pillars of mediation theory?
2. Is it possible to have a “one size fits all” theory, or is it just different wording?
3. What are the most practical points you derived from this article?
Assignment Expectations
1. I am more interested in your insight and understanding, and less in a summary of the article.
2. As we have multiple questions here, please use subheadings per the questions.
3. APA Format – Strong Introduction and Conclusion
Required Reading
Noll, D. E. (2001). A theory of mediation. Dispute Resolution Journal; New York; May-Jul 2001.
Shachar, M. (2011). Conflict Resolution Management (CRM). Text Book Chapters 1 and 10.
Shachar, M. (2014). Mediation and Arbitration: Module 1 PowerPoint presentation.
McLean, D. J., & Wilson, S. P. (2008). Compelling Mediation in the Context of Med-Arb Agreements. Dispute Resolution Journal. New York: Aug-Oct 2008. Vol. 63, Iss. 3; pg. 28.

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