Building Trust Online: The Realities of Telepresence for Mediators Engaged in Online Dispute Resolution

Volume 49, Number 1, Stetson Law Review

45 Pages Posted: 12 Jul 2019

See all articles by Susan Nauss Exon

Susan Nauss Exon

University of La Verne College of Law

Soomi Lee

University of La Verne

Date Written: February 3, 2019

Abstract

The ability to engender trust is a critical skill for mediators, especially when conducting online dispute resolution. The purpose of this empirical research is to examine the extent to which parties can trust a mediator when communicating in a video-collaborated environment known as telepresence. Will parties who have never met a mediator prior to the mediation and who communicate solely using telepresence, find the mediator to be trustworthy and trust the mediator to the same extent as those parties who communicate face-to-face with the mediator? Will factors such as age, gender, and educational level significantly affect an individual’s ability to trust a mediator? Does an individual’s familiarity with, and use of, a video-collaborated environment such as Skype, FaceTime or a similar platform affect an individual’s ability to trust a mediator? What is the impact of an individual’s predisposition to trust? We analyzed data from a small-scale experimental study (N=59), and in this research project conclude that there is no statistically significant difference in the extent to which participants trust a mediator in all contexts and factors. The same result applies to trustworthiness except for one exception regarding the effect of a pre-disposition to trust.

Keywords: Trust, Trust Development, Mediation, Virtual Mediation, ADR, Alternative Dispute Resolution, ODR, Online Dispute Resolution, Telepresence, Video-Collaborated Environment

Suggested Citation

Exon, Susan Nauss and Lee, Soomi, Building Trust Online: The Realities of Telepresence for Mediators Engaged in Online Dispute Resolution (February 3, 2019). Volume 49, Number 1, Stetson Law Review. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3403279

Susan Nauss Exon (Contact Author)

University of La Verne College of Law ( email )

320 East D Street
Ontario, CA 91764
United States

Soomi Lee

University of La Verne ( email )

1950 3rd St.
CBPM120
La Verne, CA CA 91750
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
38
Abstract Views
124
PlumX Metrics