When Talk Works: Profiles of Mediators / Edition 1

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Twelve personal, interview-based profiles in the style of The New Yorker present an inside view of mediators at work: who they are and what techniques they use to achieve successful results in all areas of our society where conflicts arise—from business, law, and public policy to public education, the environment, and labor relations. Compelling stories illustrate the many ways to "make talk work," offering insights to mediators currently working in the field, those seeking to enter the profession, and others who find that mediation skills are critical to success in their careers.

Through twelve in-depth profiles of professional and volunteer mediators, this book goes behind the scenes to show how accomplished mediators deal with routine and difficult situations.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Insightful and highly readable. The best examination of what successful mediators actually do. Anyone who wants to settle a dispute will learn a lot from these profiles." —Roger Fisher, coauthor, Getting to Yes

"All mediators, and anyone else who practices or is interested in alternative dispute resolution, will be interested in this book." —Mary P. Rowe, ombudsperson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"A must read for anyone contemplating the practice of alternative dispute resolution as a mediator or using the services of a mediator." —Wallace Warfield, George Mason University, and former president, Society of Professionals in Dispute Resolution

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787910907
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 7/28/1997
  • Series: Business-Management Series
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 544
  • Sales rank: 1,009,717
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 9.02 (h) x 1.37 (d)

Meet the Author

DEBORAH M. KOLB is executive director of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School and professor of management at the Simmons College Graduate School of Management.

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Table of Contents

Preface xiii

The Authors xvii


Another Way to Settle Disputes: The Practice of Meditation 1
Deborah M. Kolb

Part One The Professionals

1 Frances Butler: Questions That Lead to Answers in Child Custody Mediation 17
Kenneth Kressel

2 Patrick Davis: “To Bring Out the Best … To Undo a Little Pain” in Special Education Mediation 61
Susan S. Silbey

3 Howard Bellman: Using “Bundles of Input” to Negotiate an Environmental Dispute 105
Christine B. Harrington

4 William Hobgood: “Conditioning” Parties in Labor Grievances 149
Deborah M. Kolb

5 Patrick Phear: Control, Commitment, and Minor Miracles in Family and Divorce Mediation 191
Austin Sarat

Part Two Builders of the Field

6 Albie M. Davis: Community Mediation as Community Organizing 245
Sally Engle Merry

7 Eric Green: finding Alternatives to Litigation in Business Disputes 279
Lavinia E. Hall

8 Lawrence Susskind: Activist Mediation and Public Disputes 309
John Forester

Part Three Extending the Reach of Mediation

9 Juju Atkinson: Blurring the Distinction Between Mediation and Adjudication 359
William M. O’Barr

10 Jimmy Carter: The Power of Moral Suasion in International Mediation 375
Eileen F. Babbitt

11 Linda Colburn: On-the Spot Mediation in a Public Housing Project 395
Neal Milner

12 Joseph Elder: Quiet Peacemaking in a Civil War 427
Thomas Princen


The Realities of Making Talk Work 459
Deborah M. Kolb and Kenneth Kressel

Index 495

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