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Opportunities for Mediators in ODR

Opportunities for Mediators in ODR

What challenges and opportunities does ODR bring for mediators?



Full Transcript

Well, I worry that we’re not taking seriously enough that line about conflict being a growth industry. Use of artificial intelligence, I can’t second guess Professor Hawking, but I do worry that we create disputes without even thinking about it because we’re put in environments where we’re using technology in ways that we never did before.


We don’t have to do anything actually to generate disputes. We just have to live and adopt technology. On the other hand, to respond, we need to design systems. The whole field of dispute systems design isn’t prepared really to figure out how to deal with large numbers of disputes. That’s why I’m happy that in the U.K. you’re engaged in trying to figure out how ODR can be adopted in different segments of the economy. I’m appalled that in the U.S. there are no online small claims courts. Again, the technology for ODR works better with simple disputes than complex disputes. We have these courts in every state, small claims courts. When you think about it, that’s what eBay has is a small claims court. They can do it. Government can’t do it. It’s appalling.

About the mediator

Ethan Ktash Profile Pic

Professor Ethan Katsh is Director of the National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution and Professor Emeritus of Legal Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. During the current year, he is a Research Affiliate at Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society Professor Katsh is widely recognized as the founder of the field of online dispute resolution (ODR). Along with Janet Rifkin, he conducted the eBay Pi... View Mediator