18 August 2021

MEDIA RELEASE: Dispute resolution more important than ever in the tech world

Resolution Institute's 2021 Dispute Resolution Conference

18 August 2021

On the 15th and 16th of July over 400 delegates descended virtually on to the Resolution Institute 2021 international conference, Resilience and Reinvention: Dispute Resolution During a Crisis. Distinguished guest speakers included Her Excellency the Hon Margaret Beazley AC QC, Governor of NSW and The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG who delivered the keynote address, titled Wicked Problems. Bright Solutions.

Other speakers appearing at the event included key influencers and stakeholders from the business, government, law, judiciary, commercial and academic sectors.

Jackie O’Brien, a Partner at global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright Australia, chaired a panel on information technology and intellectual property disputes, where she spoke about the ‘rise of the client’ – the ability of clients to control the way, and time frame, in which their IT and IP disputes are dealt with was discussed. This, she said, was a perfect fit for the flexibility and efficiency of alternative dispute resolution.

“In times of disruption, people innovate, and when people innovate, IP is almost always created or used.  It makes perfect sense then to pay special attention at the moment to the ways in which disputes can be dealt with quickly, flexibly and cost effectively, especially given the multi-jurisdictional nature they often take on,” said Ms. O’Brien.

The panellists, Angela Bowne SC and Dr Gordon Hughes AM, drew on their vast experience for a deep dive on the strengths, weaknesses and eccentricities of arbitration, mediation, and expert determination in resolving disputes, especially in the COVID era.

“Lawyers have been forced to become more familiar with and integrate IT into their working lives over the course of this pandemic, and they will hopefully take those lessons with them going forward,” said Dr Hughes.

“The inherent efficiency and flexibility of online dispute resolution processes is something that has been discovered due to the COVID situation,” added Ms Bowne.

As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the local and global economies, significant challenges are apparent. For both private enterprises and public institutions, priorities are rapidly shifting under increased pressure and for organisations in dispute prone sectors, the efficient resolution of disputes is now more important than ever in order to maintain business and rebuild community confidence and harmony.

Resolution Institute is the peak industry body across dispute resolution disciplines in Australia and Aotearoa, New Zealand. We are a vibrant community of mediators, arbitrators, expert determiners, adjudicators, restorative justice practitioners and other dispute resolution professionals. We value integrity, excellence, innovation, collaboration, diversity, and influence. We reflect these values in our work for and with our members.


Sean Brogan, Public Affairs Manager: 0477 102 303