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Geoff Sharp

Courts and Mediation: A Symbiotic Relationship?

Geoff will host a discussion with panellist’s mediator Bill Wood QC, Justice Anne Hinton, and litigators Simon Ladd and Andrew Horne on the relationship between the Courts and mediation. Do the Courts have a role to play in encouraging mediation? Should mediation be mandatory in civil matters? Can the Courts make mediation an attractive option without compulsion? What does this UK experience tell us? … Is it time to close the separation between the court room and the mediation room - for judges and mediators to snuggle up?!

Get to know Geoff Sharp

Geoff Sharp is a commercial mediator working in the main centres in New Zealand and more recently as needed in Sydney. Geoff is known for his professional and innovative contribution to mediation at a global level, his vigour in promoting alternative dispute resolution and the personal integrity that underpins his efforts.

He is the third LEADR Fellow and is the first Australasian to be elected to the International Academy of Mediators (USA).

Acknowledged as one of the pioneers of New Zealand mediation, Geoff was invited to join the visiting faculty of California’s Pepperdine University Law School in 2008 as part of its Annual Summer Professional Skills Programme for Mediators. Geoff has also participated in Bond University’s Distinguished Practitioner in Residence program and is a Vice-Chair of the Independent Standards Commission of the International Mediation Institute (IMI) in the Hague currently setting global mediator credentialing standards.

In 2009 Geoff joined the International Advisory Board of Singapore Management University’s newly founded Centre for Dispute Resolution located in SMU’s School of Law Singapore.

Geoff remains as a barrister admitted to the New Zealand Bar, is an accredited mediator in Australia under the National Mediator Accreditation System and in New Zealand, he is on the advanced mediation panels of both LEADR and AAMINZ.

Geoff has trained mediators and lawyers in New Zealand, Australia, USA, Malaysia and Thailand and has consulted widely to the New Zealand Government on aspects of public sector mediation.

Prior to committing to a full-time mediation practice a decade ago, Geoff was a litigation partner at Bell Gully, one of New Zealand’s largest national commercial law firms. Before that his early career was at Mallesons (Melbourne) where he is admitted to the Supreme Court of Victoria and the High Court and Federal Court of Australia.