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Mediation and COVID-19 share the same DNA – Liminality and the Adjacent Possible

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"Loved this. Great value in highlighting reflective practice and what makes mediation distinct from the formal structures of procedural legal processes."


Greg Rooney in conversation with Margaret Ross with commentary by US mediator Michael Lang

Greg's paper on this topic can be downloaded from https://gregrooney.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Mediation-and-Covid19-1-Edited-version.pdf

We are often told to think outside the box. But how do you think when there is no box?

The global pandemic has reminded us that life is uncertain and unpredictable. However, paradoxically, despite the lockdown, we have a new type of freedom where the shackles or inhibitors of the past are released. This creates unforeseeable opportunities. It is the realm of pure possibility.

Greg and Margaret discussed the parallels between navigating the uncertainty posed by COVID-19 and the art of the mediator working in a complex human and factual environment.

They introduced concepts drawn from complexity science, anthropology and economics that provide guidance for mediators in plotting a path forward for parties caught in conflict.

Michael reflects on the discussion including from a reflective practice perspective.

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About the speakers

Greg Rooney and Margaret Ross

Greg Rooney and Margaret Ross have been practising mediators in Australia for 29 years. They are lawyers who specialise in mediating in a face-to-face facilitative environment.

Greg and Margaret have co-facilitated annual mediation retreats in Tuscany since 2012 and have recently worked with French mediator Jacqueline Morineau with her Humanistic Mediation approach which she introduced into France in the 1980s. Margaret is currently translating one of Jacqueline’s books on Humanistic Mediation into English.

Greg is a Director of the Mediator Standards Board of Australia.

Michael Lang is a US based mediator with more than 40 years' experience as a practising mediator, trainer and academic. He is a prominent international leader in the field of conflict resolution with a special interest in reflective practice on which he has published widely.

Michael served as Editor-in-Chief of Mediation Quarterly (now Conflict Resolution Quarterly) from 1995-2001 and a former President of the Academy of Family Mediators.

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Tags: Mediation