Many doors? closing doors? : alternate dispute resolution and adjudication

by Judith Resnik

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This paper maps the changing attitudes toward alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and the claims made on behalf of ADR, as well as changing attitudes toward adjudication and its attributes. The author presents historical background on the call for alternative forms of dispute resolution; outlines the various forms of ADR and groups them into modes defined by the nature of the work done by the third party brought in to handle a dispute; reviews some of the ways in which ADR proposals have become law and been institutionalized; and considers the relationship between claims made for ADR and views of adjudication. Finally, she uses this background to define some issues that may affect ADR and adjudication in the future: We can observe the melding of ADR into adjudication, and then the narrowing of ADR and its refocusing as a tool to produce contractual agreements among disputants--the focus is shifting from adjudication to resolution.

Originally published in: The Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution, v. 10, no. 2, pp. 211-265.

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