Top Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Institutions of 2021

The next series of articles will highlight some of the top alternative dispute resolution (ADR) institutions and programs of 2021.  The goal of this series is to highlight the expansive list of resources available and provide links to help our ADR Times readers needing further resources on a specific subject.

  1. This article, the first in the series, will focus on the best ADR institutions and provide an overview of the services they provide and how they can provide further resources for parties and people wondering how to leverage alternative dispute resolution – to help resolve their disputes.
  2. The second article will focus on the top 25 best universities and programs for pursuing a certificate or degree in the field of alternative dispute resolution.
  3. Finally, the third article will discuss the top 50 ADR blawgs (law blogs) to highlight some of the best blogs on negation, mediation, arbitration, and ADR to help our readers find the resources they need.

For this article though, we turn our attention back to the top institutions providing resources and services to people around the globe.

Resource Sites

The following sites provide access to some of the best resources of 2021 to learn and leverage the power of alternative dispute resolution – to help you resolve your disputes.  These resources have a variety of resources and provide both an overview of the ADR process and an in-depth analysis of certain parts of the ADR community. These organizations also include directories, databases, or matching services to connect parties with expert practitioners:

  • American Arbitration Association (adr.org): The American Arbitration Association (AAA) and it’s sister platform, AAA Mediation.org (https://www.aaamediation.org/) is an association of arbitrators and mediators seeking to connect parties and arbitrators with resources and practitioners to the public.  The AAA also provides resources for people hoping to learn about arbitration and other ADR processes.  They also regulate arbitrators within the Unites States.
  • JAMS (jamsadr.com): JAMS is the world’s largest private alternative dispute provider.  JAMS matches their experienced arbitrators and mediators with clients based on geography and subject-matter expertise.  They also focus on innovation to continue to refine the ADR process and encourage collaborative solutions.
  • International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution (cpradr.org): CPR provides a variety of resources to help “prevent and resolve legal conflict more effectively and efficiently.”  Members of the CPR Institute drive innovation and thought to bring new ideas to the world of ADR.  They also regulate practitioners that are members of the Institute.
  • Mediate.com (mediate.com): Mediate.com is an extensive collection of resources on alternative dispute resolution, focusing specifically on mediation resources, but also including resources on other areas of dispute resolution.  The goal of the site to connect the general public with ADR resources and practitioners.  The home page features mediators from the reader’s area, while also listing a variety of resources.  Browsers can find mediators and sort them based on geography or practice area and the ability to search for specific content or browse the latest news.  When searching for information on mediation, Mediate.com will likely come up in a search.

Research and Training

The following sites offer information about the research and evaluation of ADR as well as providing training to practitioners.  These institutions would be helpful for those looking to gain deeper insight into the ADR process and potentially be trained to participate in the process in some way.

  • Alliance for Conflict Transformation (conflicttransformation.org): Alliance for Conflict Transformation (ACT) is a non-profit that “empowers people to resolve conflict and build peace.” ACT has three main projects: (1) analysis, research, and evaluation, (2) conflict resolution and peacebuilding, and (3) training and education.  ACT has centers for peacebuilding and conflict resolution in some of the most war-torn places in the world.  They also conduct training and provide education on peacebuilding.  The focus of ACT to shift conflict from adversarial to peacebuilding.
  • Carter Center (https://www.cartercenter.org/): The Carter Center focuses on alleviating suffering through innovative conflict resolution in countries in need around the world.  The Carter Center focuses on enforcing human rights by resolving conflict in the hardest-hit areas.  They also focus on training people on the ground to continue the work.
  • Transnational Foundation (https://transnational.live/): The Transnational Foundation for Peace & Future Research is “an independent think tank” that seeks to find peaceful and alternative ways to bring peace into the conversation around the world.  The website focuses on new and upcoming ideas for resolution.
  • United States Institute of Peace (https://www.usip.org/):  The United States Institute for Peace focuses on resolving conflict around the world through peaceful means.  The goal is to eliminate the need for armed conflict.  The Institute was created by Congress to continue training and researching to bring peace to the hardest-hit parts of the world.

Subject Matter Specific Sites

These institutions and sites have subject matter-specific content, ranging from labor disputes to insurance arbitrations.  These instructions are the frontline for specific ADR practices involving their subject matter.

  • Insurance: Arbitration Forums (arbfile.org): Arbitration Forums is a member-driven organization that focuses on providing arbitration in member insurance disputes.  The focus of Arbitration Forums is to resolve disputes without using litigation.  An interesting fact about arbitration forums is that they use employees of an uninterested company as arbitrators.  ADR Times has a full article on Arbitration Forums, found here.   
  • Labor: Federal Mediation & Conciliation Service (fmcs.gov): The Federal Mediation & Conciliation Service is an agency under the federal government that focuses on resolving labor and management disputes within the United States.  The service focuses on labor disputes that would likely interrupt the chain of commerce in the country.  ADR Times also has a full article on FMCS, found here.
  • Securities: FINRA Dispute Resolution Services (finra.org/arbitration-mediation): FINRA is an organization that seeks to protect America’s markets.  They provide arbitration and mediation services on securities disputes to investors and brokers.
  • International Trade: International Chamber of Commerce (iccwbo.org/dispute-resolution-services): The International Chamber of Commerce focuses on encouraging and protecting international commerce.  The ICC provides dispute resolution services to people involved in international trade disputes all over the world.  The goal of the dispute resolution service is to provide efficient and effective services.
  • Airline and Railroads: National Mediation Board (nmb.gov/): The National Mediation Board is the government agency that “helps to maintain the flow of interstate commerce” by resolving disputes in the airline and railway industries through representation, mediation, and arbitration.
  • Countries: Permanent Court of Arbitration (pca-cpa.org): The Permanent Court of Arbitration is a court established at the Hauge to resolve disputes between states.  Today, it also is a leader in the development of arbitration, taking on the goal of continuing to expand the world of arbitration.
  • International Trade: UNCITRAL (uncitral.un.org): The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law is the leader in providing trade law and ADR resources.  UNCITRAL’s Model Law provides a framework for the regulation of international trade-related disputes.  They also provide training and encourage ADR for international trade disputes.

Connections for Practitioners

These websites are some of the best at connecting people practicing ADR solutions.  While most of the sites on this list have lists of practitioners available for members of the public to find, but these sites focusing on bringing practitioners together to learn and grow.

  • ABA Section of Dispute Resolution (americanbar.org/groups/dispute_resolution/): The American Bar Association is one of the biggest connectors of lawyers and legal practitioners in the country. The ABA breaks this large group into smaller groups based on geography or practice area.  The Section of Dispute Resolution focuses on connecting and training people practicing ADR.  This is done through networking events and conferences to connect and grow the section.
  • Association for Conflict Resolution (acrnet.org): The Association for Conflict Resolution is an organization that seeks to spread awareness of ADR and enhance practitioners’ practice.  They provide interest sections, regional chapters, initiatives, and conferences to train and connect practitioners to share their accomplishments and help each other grow.
  • International Academy of Mediators (iamed.org): The International Academy of Mediator (IAM) is an invite-only professional membership organization composed of some of the best commercial mediators around the world.  They also provide training and conferences for members and include a directory of members on their site.
  • National Academy of Arbitrators (naarb.org): The National Academy of Arbitrators is an honorary and professional organization of arbitrators in the United States in Canada that is focused on labor and employment arbitration.  The NAARB focuses on providing the best arbitrators and training and networking for constant improvement.  The NAARB also seeks to uphold the integrity of the arbitration process in both the United States and Canada through protecting the process in the courts.

Conclusion

This list is a non-exhaustive list of the plethora of resources and institutions on dispute resolution that exists around the world and online.  ADR is an ever-growing and expanding field, and there is room for the field to continue to push for new and exciting opportunities.  These institutions will likely shift and change as time moves on, but these are some of the top institutions providing resources, research, training, and networking, whether it be a broad ADR resource site or a subject-matter-specific site.  These institutions will help the most novice ADR explorer learn more about the process and hopefully encourage them to participate in the process.

We also want to thank you for exploring this article on ADR Times.  ADR Times is one of the leading resources on all things ADR.  We focus on providing the leading source of dispute resolution information for ADR practitioners, lawyers, claims professionals, and scholars.  If you need information on an ADR topic, ADR Times seeks to provide that for you.  Feel free to browse our site for all your ADR needs. And return for the next two parts of this series, where we discuss the best ADR programs and universities and then the best ADR blogs.

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