A group of very prominent stakeholders on commercial dispute resolution met at Cardozo Law School on 12 September 2016, to conduct the New York City session of the Global Pound Conference. Of all the many institutions and volunteers who were responsible for this success, the International Mediation Institute takes the foremost position in realising the vision of its founder, Michael Leathes.
The New York participants included representatives of users of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) i.e. companies and individuals, advisers to those users (lawyers and law firms), providers of adjudicative or non-adjudicative services (ADR organisations and solo practitioners), and other ‘influencers’ (including academics and other experts). These people participated, not just attended, because they periodically responded to ‘core questions’ (posed to participants in all 40 conferences in 32 countries) and other more local and specific questions. These responses were made available to the participants in real time, and in the aggregate will yield robust data reflecting regional as well as global insight into where we are and where we might progress.
This conference addressed the resolution of business disputes. Specifically excluded were family, consumer, criminal or other types of disputes.
Among the welcoming speakers, Laurence Shore of Herbert Smith Freehills cautioned humility and modesty both from advocates (who may obstruct resolution through behavior they defend as ‘zealous’), and neutral mediators and arbitr