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Areas of Growth for ODR

Areas of Growth for ODR

Where do you think we are likely to see ODR flourish?

 

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I think . . . You know, I’m not sure I would prejudge. I think, you know, it’s very easy for us to experiment first with this sort of small claims types of disputes, and I think that’s a safe and sound route to take. I wouldn’t . . . An area where, surprisingly maybe for some, ODR people have found interests in ODR avenues is family law. Which I think for many people was a surprise because they though people really need to sit in a room and yell at each other, and surprise surprise, we discovered that people who get divorced maybe don’t want to spend time in a room together.

 

Maybe it’s actually easier for them to weigh their options and think about things and think about their own interests in a clearer way, when they’re not in the room with the person they’re not getting along with very well. Distance may prove to be an advantage in many types of disputes, maybe especially for disempowered parties where they need the time where they can consult, or they can have someone else with them. Might not have come to the room, to the courtroom, or to the ADR conference room or whatever it was. So I think we’re in . . . Again I’m thinking of our imagination limiting us here in this respect. I think small claims is easier for everyone to go there. Definitely I think there’s a lot of potential there, but I think we may be surprised with the types of cases that could prove to be appropriate.

 

Definitely makes sense to bring ODR to those places where we have a lot of backlog because it’s going to help get rid of some of that backlog. But I think it’s really important to think of ODR not only because of its contribution in terms of efficiency, but also because of some of the qualitative advantages it can give us.

 

Perhaps a different kind of participation, perhaps a different sense of empowerment, perhaps different types of processes that can bring us to different types of results.

About the mediator

Orna Rabinovich Profile Pic

Orna Rabinovich-Einy is a senior lecturer (with tenure) at the Faculty of Law at the University of Haifa. Her areas of expertise are alternative dispute resolution (ADR), online dispute resolution (ODR), and civil procedure, with research focusing on the relationship between formal and informal justice systems, dispute resolution system design and the impact of technology on dispute resolution. Rabinovich-Einy is a fellow of the Haifa Forum of... View Mediator