Organisations announce way is paved for greater cooperation.

IDRS Ltd, one of the UK’s leading dispute resolution service providers, has been sold by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) to the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) on 8 November 2011.

IDRS Ltd administers a range of schemes for the resolution of consumer complaints (including the CISAS scheme for communications disputes and the POSTRS scheme for postal consumers), as well as handling commercial disputes between businesses and public sector organisations. The move will see IDRS Ltd added as a going-concern to CEDR Services Ltd (CEDR’s commercial arm) while CIArb will be able to concentrate on its core business as a Chartered professional and membership body.

CIArb and CEDR envisage the sale as the beginning of a closer and mutually-beneficial relationship between both organisations and have agreed to cooperate in the area of research on dispute resolution techniques. Together, they will look to further develop this relationship for the benefit of the mediation community and the maintenance of the highest standards across the profession, including the provision of professional development opportunities and events.

Michael Forbes Smith, CIArb’s Director General said “I am convinced that this move will prove beneficial to both organisations and to our many satisfied clients who have been served so well by IDRS. It allow us to concentrate on our core mission to promote and facilitate alternative dispute resolution throughout the world and we look forward to working with CEDR to create further opportunities for our research and thought leadership roles”.

Dr Karl Mackie CBE, Chief Executive of CEDR commented “The acquisition of IDRS complements CEDR Solve’s services, traditionally in high-profile commercial business disputes, which have also recently expanded into consumer and public body adjudication services. We value the collaborative relationship which has developed between us over these discussions and are enthusiastic about taking this forward in the future.”

Both organisations look forward to cooperating over research that will further both CIArb’s responsibilities as a learned society and CEDR’s continuing focus as a conflict management foundation on innovation in dispute approaches, to provide thought leadership and promote the understanding of the advantages of mediation to business and the community at large. To this end, CIArb and CEDR are planning to co-host a joint mediation-focused event in early 2012 on the theme of the future for research into ADR.

The sale of IDRS Ltd was completed on 8 November 2011. The IDRS employees currently located in their own offices in City Road, Islington, will move to CEDR’s offices in Fleet Street in the City of London at the start of 2012.

The City Disputes Panel and the administration of CIArb’s presidential appointments, which has been carried out by IDRS limited since 2007, will revert to CIArb on the sale of the Company.

Read Article—


The Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) is an independent, non-profit organisation with a mission to cut the cost of conflict and create choice and capability in dispute prevention and resolution.