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April 7, 2006

Event Contact: Hannah Norton, Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution, (512) 471-3507.

Sixth Annual Symposium on Dispute Resolution, April 27

WHAT: Dispute Resolution Symposium
WHEN: Thurs., April 27; 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Keynote speech at 10:20 a.m.
WHERE: Eidman Courtroom and Jury Room, UT School of Law
WHO: The public is invited to attend keynote speech and student presentations

AUSTIN, Texas — The Center for Public Policy Dispute Resolution at The University of Texas School of Law will host the Sixth Annual Spring Symposium on Dispute Resolution on Thurs., April 27.

The symposium will feature keynote speaker Professor Leonard Riskin of the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law and ten UT graduate and law students, each presenting research on various dispute resolution topics. The symposium begins at 8:30 a.m. in the Eidman Courtroom and Jury Room at the Law School.

The public is invited to attend the program’s keynote speech on “Understanding Influence in Mediation: The New Old Grid and The New New Grid Systems” by Professor Leonard Riskin at 10:20 a.m. in the Eidman Courtroom. In the mid 1990s, Leonard Riskin proposed what became the most widely-used method of classifying mediator orientations. It employed continuums based on “facilitative” and “evaluative” mediator roles and on “narrow” to “broad” problem-definitions. Recently, Riskin has revisited the system, found deep flaws in it, and has developed a “New New Grid System” that takes account of the influence of all the participants, not just the mediator, on a wide range of decisions. This presentation will include an explanation of the system and a demonstration of how to use it to help understand and improve mediation decision-making.

From 9-10 a.m. and 1-2:40 p.m., graduate students from the College of Communication, LBJ School of Public Affairs, Department of Sociology, School of Law, and School of Social Work will present their research on topics including Russian peacekeeping in the Georgian-Abkhaz conflict, victim offender mediation and the intersection of social work theories, the potential use of alternative dispute resolution in the context of medical products liability cases, the push for Texas implementation of child protective mediation, and faith-based initiatives in resolving private family disputes. Student presentations will be in the Eidman Courtroom and Jury Room and the public is invited to attend.

Leonard Riskin is C.A. Leedy Professor of Law and Director of the Center for the Study of Dispute Resolution and the Initiative on Mindfulness in Law and Dispute Resolution at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. He earned a J.D. from New York University School of Law and an LL.M. from Yale Law School and served as an attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice. He has been mediating, training and writing about dispute resolution since 1980.

The Spring Symposium on Dispute Resolution is sponsored by the State Bar of Texas Construction Law Section and Alternative Dispute Resolution Section. It culminates the sixth year of the interdisciplinary Graduate Portfolio Program in Dispute Resolution. Through this Portfolio Program, law and graduate students from ten different academic units at The University of Texas at Austin pursue a focused curriculum of theory, skills, and research on dispute resolution.

Related Link:
Visit the website of the Graduate Portfolio Program in Dispute Resolution for a schedule of the symposium’s events and to find more information on dispute resolution:
http://www.utexas.edu/law/academics/centers/cppdr/portfolio/