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James South
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CEDR’s Managing Director, mediating public and private sector disputes for 17 years. As one of the world’s most experienced dispute resolution trainers and consultants James is responsible for the development of CEDR’s leading courses in ADR and Conflict Management.

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Appraisal Committee, IMI Board, Training and Competence
United Kingdom
Mediation Profile

As CEDR’s Director of Training and Consultancy, James is one of the UK’s most experienced ADR trainers and consultants, specialising in ADR dispute process design and capacity building and has worked in many countries in 2008-2009, including, Spain, Ireland, India, Pakistan, Hong Kong, China, Egypt, Croatia, Ukraine and Bosnia Herzegovina. With this experience, speaking Spanish and training in cross-cultural issues in mediation, James is also experienced in mediating disputes with an international element including; international development disputes, cross-border and cross-cultural disputes. In addition to his mediating experience, he combines his mediating, training and consultancy skills to provide facilitation services particularly for groups, which find themselves in conflict. James was admitted as a barrister and solicitor in New Zealand in 1994 and after practising as a barrister, was appointed as a full-time mediator for the Ministries of Justice and Housing in Auckland. In three years, James mediated hundreds of disputes involving face-to-face, shuttle and telephone mediation processes. While in this role James trained in advanced mediation skills and dealing with difficult people, with Boulder Colorado. He also trained in cross-cultural issues in mediation. James moved to London in 1999 and gained a Masters in Law (distinction) in Dispute Prevention and Resolution, at the University of Westminster. He joined CEDR in 2000 and is now CEDR’s Director of Training and Consultancy. As such, he is one of the few full-time mediation professionals in the UK, and his work takes him to many parts of the world, training lawyers, judges and other professionals as well advising on government and international organisations such as the World Bank, on the development of ADR worldwide.

With 14 years experience as a mediator in the United Kingdom and Internationally, James has mediated many types of disputes both in the public and private sector. His mediation practice has a strong commercial, property and international perspective.

James believes that in modern mediation the mediator needs to balance the understanding of background of the disputes and the issues with an ability to quickly and actively engage in facilitating the parties’ negotiation. To do this, he places emphasis on the early building of rapport with the parties in order to understand all issues in the dispute and gain their trust. He believes this initial focus then allows for him to focus the parties on the problems to be resolved and assist them to evaluate options for resolution. At this stage of the process, James believes active assistance in the negotiation process, firm reality testing and a focus on pragmatic outcomes is the central role of the mediator, in assisting the parties to resolve their dispute.

James has extensive experience in the following sectors: Commercial Finance and Banking Employment Partnership Insurance and Reinsurance Property International Public Sector

Training and Education

Masters in Law (distinction) in Dispute Prevention and Resolution, University of Westminster, 1999.

Delivered mediation advocacy training to lawyers in United Kingdom, Ireland and Hong Kong (2009). Delivers conflict Management and negotiation training to many organisation including BBC, NATO, European Bank of Reconstruction and Development and Intercontinental Hotel Group, in Belgium, Austria, and China Advisor to Ministries of Justice in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Macedonia on development of action plan as part of 5-year strategy for Justice (2008 –2010). Consultant to the World Bank, Washington DC, in the development of best practice in designing ADR projects in developing countries (2009-20010). Delivery of seminars to Hong Kong Judiciary and Court staff as part of preparation for new ADR provision of their Civil Justice Rules (2009). Capacity building in Kiev, Ukraine as aprt of a project for the resolution of Corporate Governance Disputes, funded by the Word Bank/ IFC (2008) Project Technical Director for the establishment of a mediation pilot in Karachi Pakistan, funded by the International Finance Corporation/World Bank (2006-08) Project Director for development of mediation pilot in the Commercial Court of Zagreb, Croatia, funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (2005-07). He teaches International Commercial Mediation at the University of Westminster, London and at the University of Catalunya, Spain. He has also taught ADR at Birbeck College, University of London, Southbank University, Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University, London and the University of San Francisco.


‘Development of Mediator Training in England and Wales’; Nederlands-Vlaams tijdschrift voor mediation en conflict management; Dec 2008 ‘What's driving the interest in Mediation globally’ ;International Bar Association, Dispute Resolution Section Journal, September 2008 The genesis of mediation in Pakistan; International Bar Association Dispute Resolution Section Journal; January 2007


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James South
Managing Director
United Kingdom
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