The Effects of Neutral, Evaluative, and Pressing Mediator Strategies

Conflict Resolution Quarterly, Volume 29, Issue 2, pp. 127-150, Winter 2011

Posted: 21 Mar 2013

See all articles by Suzanne Chan-Serafin

Suzanne Chan-Serafin

University of New South Wales (UNSW)

James A. Wall

University of Missouri at Columbia

Timothy Dunne

Middle Tennessee State University

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

This study investigates the effects of three mediator strategies — neutral, evaluative, and pressing — upon agreement and satisfaction in 100 civil case mediations. The authors found a significant difference in that a neutral strategy resulted in agreement only 28 percent of the time, whereas the evaluative strategy had an agreement rate of 69 percent and the pressing strategy a 57 percent rate. They also found that consistent use of each strategy throughout the mediation increased the agreement rate. When producing high agreements, the two assertive strategies — evaluative and pressing — modestly reduced disputant satisfaction. The study also disclosed that mediators obtained more agreements in motor vehicle, medical malpractice, and personal liability cases than in contract and employment disputes.

Suggested Citation

Chan-Serafin, Suzanne and Wall, James A. and Dunne, Timothy, The Effects of Neutral, Evaluative, and Pressing Mediator Strategies (2011). Conflict Resolution Quarterly, Volume 29, Issue 2, pp. 127-150, Winter 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2235874

Suzanne Chan-Serafin

University of New South Wales (UNSW) ( email )

Kensington
High St
Sydney, NSW 2052
Australia

James A. Wall (Contact Author)

University of Missouri at Columbia ( email )

Middlebush B UMC
Columbia, MO 65211
United States
573-882-4561 (Phone)

Timothy Dunne

Middle Tennessee State University ( email )

Murfreesboro, TN
United States

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