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Mediation of a dispute

I am looking to prepare for a final exam on alternative dispute resolution focusing on mediation. I have a set of practice questions that I need to master to help me prepare. No solutions are posted and I really need to see what a well-reasoned and detailed response would look like to each. An actual dispute (that can be documented with newspaper articles, website, etc...) must be used, so that I can see the entire set of facts involved in the case.

The questions are attached. Thanks!

The purpose of this set of questions is to help you prepare for the final exam. These questions aim to put "theory into practice" by analyzing a REAL dispute or conflict, and applying the principles of interest-based negotiation and mediation to the case. Make sure to choose a case where there's enough information for you to understand the issues, the parties and their positions.

You are the mediator in this case. Answer the following questions:

1. Identify issues(s)

a. what are all of the issues?
b. identify the main issue in dispute
c. which issues will you focus on? which issues will you ignore?

2. Identify positions

a. define position
b. state the first party's position
c. state the second party's position

3. Identify interests

a. define interest
b. state the first party's interests
c. state the second party's interests

4. Describe your mediation plan
a. state your hypothesis of the cause/causes of the conflict
b. explain your strategy for how to approach the dispute and the specific interventions you plan to use
c. explain how you would "set the stage" for this particular dispute
d. state how you would frame the issue
e. explain how you will help the parties develop options

5. Creating options

a. brainstorm 5-8 possible options to resolve the main issue in dispute
Note: Be sure that they are separate options and not just variations of one option. Please have a few options that are creative; in other words, expand the pie and/or think "outside the box". Do not put these options in any particular order.

6. Judging options

a. rank the options from best to worst
b. explain your rationale for your best option
c. explain your rationale for your worst option

7. Objective Criteria

a. define objective criteria
b. list at least three examples of objective criteria applicable to this case

8. BATNA

a. define BATNA
b. state the first party's BATNA and explain the costs and benefits of it
c. state the second party's BATNA and explain the costs and benefits of it
d. explain how each party's BATNA influences the final result

9. Nailing Down the Agreement

a. write a specific and detailed memorandum of agreement based on your best option
b. explain how the parties will handle future minor problems
c. define failure of the agreement and the steps parties will take in the event the agreement fails

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Practice Problems for Final Exam

The purpose of this set of questions is to help you prepare for the final exam. These questions aim to put "theory into practice" by analyzing a REAL dispute or conflict, and applying the principles of interest-based negotiation and mediation to the case. Make sure to choose a case where there's enough information for you to understand the issues, the parties and their positions.

You are the mediator in this case. Answer the following questions:
This material is taken from the website: http://www.wal-martlitigation.com/currentd.htm" Wal-Mart Designated "Merchant of Shame." The National Organization for Women (NOW) designated Wal-Mart as a "Merchant of Shame" in recognition of its exceptional performance. This victory over many deserving competitors probably came as a surprise to the general public. Wal-Mart presents itself as a model of retail success and employee-friendly practices. However, in practice, Wal-Mart's treatment of its women workers is indeed shameful, and those who take advantage of its compliance process often find themselves on the street. According to Equal Employment Opportunity Commission data, women make up almost three-quarters of Wal-Mart sales workers but less than one third of management ? a proportion substantially lower than its competitors' average of 55%. Only one of Wal-Mart's top 20 officers and 10% of its store managers are female. On average, as the NOW survey reveals, full-time sales associates earn only $6.10 an hour, which frequently leaves their annual earnings below the poverty level with half of these full-time employees qualifying for federal food stamps. Three public interest organizations, Equal Rights Advocates, the Impact Fund and the Public Justice Center have organized a nationwide class action on behalf of current and former female Wal-Mart employees, alleging sex discrimination in promotion, pay and training. If the class is certified, it would be the largest of its kind against a private employer, with as many as 700,000 plaintiffs. This suit serves as a wake-up call to the public in general and to the retail sector in particular." http://www.wal-martlitigation.com/currentd.htm

1. Identify issues(s)

a. what are all of the issues?
The issues are that there is discrimination against women employees in Wal-Mart in relation to promotion, pay and training.
The women are paid low wages to the extent of $6.10 that forces them below poverty line.
The women are kept in low paying positions and are not given positions of responsibility.
a. identify the main issue in dispute.
The main issue is discrimination against women.
b. which issues will you focus on? which issues will you ignore?
I will focus on the issues of pay and promotion.
For the time being I will ignore issues of the percentage of women in managerial positions.
2. Identify positions
a. define position
The question is: Does Wal-Mart discriminate against women in pay, promotion and training?

b. state the first ...

Solution Summary

This solution gives you a detailed discussion on Mediation

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