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What Happened To The "A" In ADR?: Unintended Consequences Of Institutionalizing Mediation (2008)
  • Sherrill W. Hayes, Kennesaw State University

The success of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) programs such as mediation, arbitration, and restorative justice over the last twenty years has had much to do with the faith and wisdom of judges and legislatures willing to take a risk. In many places, mediation and arbitration are no longer “alternatives” but an institutionalized and normative part of the court system. While some still see ADR as a roadblock to the courtroom, most do not. Law schools now include ADR in their curricula; judges use mediation programs as a first step in many legal processes; and legislative bodies approve new or expand existing programs every year. Although this institutionalization of ADR created awareness that led to a boom in practitioners, this has not necessarily led to more opportunities for professionals to make a living.

Some of the effects of taking ideas intended to keep people out of the courthouse then bringing them in through a new door are just beginning to surface. This author contends that the institutionalization of ADR may be having some unintended consequences for the public who use these services and practitioners looking for a future in ADR.

  • alternative dispute resolution
Publication Date
July, 2008
Citation Information
Sherrill W. Hayes. "What Happened To The "A" In ADR?: Unintended Consequences Of Institutionalizing Mediation" (2008)
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