Source: (2000) Mediation 26(9).

This article describes the implementation of a Dutch project entitled, "Mediation Along Side the Courts," whose goal is to determine whether the structural provision of so-called "court referred mediation" within the existing judicial system is justified, and if so, to determine the most effective way to organize it. The project began in March 2000 and will continue until 2002. In the five constituent parts of the project, cases in civil, family, and administrative law will be referred to mediation. Various methods and times of referral will be tested. For the duration of the project, a fixed group of mediators has been selected, and quality standards have been mandated for both the process of referral and the mediations themselves. Experiences during the project are being measured, registered, and referred to the various participants. The results are encouraging. Up until now, more parties than expected have selected mediation, and the success rate has met expectations. A decision will be made in 2003 regarding whether referral to mediation will be given a definitive place within the Dutch judicial system.