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Harmony and transformative mediation practice: Sustaining ideological differences in purpose and practice.

Folger, Joseph
June 4, 2015

Source: (-0001) North Dakota Law Review. 84(3):823-860.

The objective of this article is to articulate and clarify the key differences
between the harmony and transformative frameworks of mediation
practice and to argue for the importance of maintaining an awareness of
these core differences in both theory and practice. The first two parts discuss how the harmony and transformative frameworks differ along three
dimensions: (a) the ideological premises that shape the goals and expectations
for conflict intervention; (b) the nature of and expectations for the
third party role within each approach to intervention; and (c) the specific
intervention practices that are central to third party work in each of the
frameworks. Part III section focuses on why the differences between the
two frameworks are often overlooked or misunderstood in the mediation
field. It clarifies the sources of confusion and discusses the impact the
misunderstandings have had on the development of transformative mediation
practice. The final part of the article argues for the importance of
sustaining a clear distinction between these two ideological approaches to
conflict intervention. It contends that the differences matter at both a conceptual
and applied level for the preservation of sustainable practice within
each framework. (excerpt)


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