Golden Themes in mediation (31 May 2018)

This month, the report of the Global Pound Conference was published by Herbert Smith Freehills, Pricewaterhouse Coopers and the International Mediation Institute.

The report is based on a huge amount of data involving more than 4,000 people at 28 conferences in 24 countries across the globe in 2016 and 2017.

The report is likely to have a substantial and long-term impact on commercial mediation.

The four ‘Key Global Themes’ identified in the report are:

  • Efficiency is the key priority of parties in the choice of dispute resolution processes. This requires thought and engagement to bring appropriate resolution in acceptable timeframes and at realistic costs.
  • Parties expect greater collaboration from their external lawyers when interacting with them and their opponents. This represents a potential challenge to traditional notions of how lawyers should represent clients in disputes.
  • There is near universal recognition that Parties to disputes should be encouraged to consider processes like mediation before they commence adjudicative dispute resolution proceedings and that non-adjudicative processes like mediation or conciliation can work effectively in combination with litigation or arbitration.
  • In-house counsel are the agents to facilitate organisational change. External lawyers are reported to be – and perceive themselves to be – resistant to change, but a new generation of in-house counsel will challenge this resistance.

A copy of the report can be downloaded from