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Mediation made accessible

IN WRITING The Practitioner’s Certificate in Mediation Course Handbook, author Alysoun Boyle was aiming for a text that “anyone could sit down and read” to gain an understanding of…

IN WRITING The Practitioner’s Certificate in Mediation Course Handbook, author Alysoun Boyle was aiming for a text that “anyone could sit down and read” to gain an understanding of mediation, but was also suitable for those aspiring to be mediation.

She said the result was based on “a hell of a lot of experience”. “It’s based on my own practical experience as a mediator, but it’s also based on my experience in training [mediators].”

Running a course was an interactive experience, she said, with trainers often learning a lot from participants in the course, not just in terms of their skills, but as to what the course content, and its handbook, should include.

Boyle was speaking at the launch of the handbook last week at a function held at the Sydney office of the Institute of Arbitrators and Mediators. Sir Laurence Street introduced the book, which was launched by former judge and Royal Commissioner Tony Fitzgerald.

Boyle said the way conflict is approached is changing from nation versus nation or corporation versus corporation to people versus people.

“I actually don’t believe there is any such thing as a commercial dispute,” she said. “It doesn’t matter what the fight is about — it can be about several billion dollars, but it is still about two people having a fight.

“That’s where mediation will come into its own.”

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