The spectrum of dispute resolution (DR)
Negotiation is a discussion between two or more
people solving disagreements, deciding what to do, or making a bargain. Negotiation may involve advocates or
Conciliation is the use of a third
person who is asked to help people reach an amicable resolution of their
dispute. The conciliator does not have the authority to impose a settlement,
and usually speaks with the parties
Facilitation involves a neutral who helps
members of a group to define and meet their goals, exchange ideas and
information, solve a problem or hold effective
Mediation is a method for discussing problems
and exploring solutions with the help of a trained neutral. Mediators help
people communicate clearly and negotiate effectively. Mediators do not take
sides, give legal advice, make decisions about resolutions or impose solutions. Mediation is private and voluntary. Research shows that mediation frequently
results in agreements that are voluntarily followed because they are created by
the people directly involved.
Neutral Evaluation is
conducted by a neutral with the expertise to hear arguments and predict the
likely outcome in court. The evaluator may also provide guidance and settlement
assistance with the parties’ consent.
Arbitration is a
formal proceeding that uses one or more neutrals to listen to evidence and
render a decision. The decision may be binding or
Litigation is a legal dispute argued in
court. Attorneys help negotiate a resolution, or a judge or jury makes a
decision. The people directly involved have little control over the process or
Consensus Building is a process of negotiation that crafts
an outcome to which all participants can agree. In tailoring the agreement,
participants seek to resolve or mitigate objections of the minority to achieve
the most agreeable decision. Consensus is usually defined as meaning both
general agreement, and the process of getting to such agreement.
Restorative Justice encompasses victim/survivor centered
processes that address harm from crime, bullying and violations of legal and
human rights. Restorative resolutions engage those who are harmed, wrongdoers
and their affected communities in search of outcomes that may help promote the
repair, reconciliation and the rebuilding of relationships.
How do I know what method is right for my situation?
When you contact a provider or CDRC they will help determine which dispute resolution procedure would be ideal for your situation.