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24 Preparing for Mediation in a Multiparty Construction Dispute

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Chapter Summary

The players at the casino gaming table bring to mind those that appear at a mediation room. The construction industry is made up of gamblers. There are a number of root causes of construction disputes and the mediator must be skilled in recognizing and dealing with them. They include: unfair/ unclear risk allocation; unrealistic time/cost/quality targets by clients; uncontrollable external events; adversarial industry culture; inappropriate contract forms; unrealistic tender pricing; clients' lack of information or decisiveness. The mediator should work with each counsel to produce realistic schedules in light of each counsel's intended approach. The statement of procedure should form part of the mediation agreement. The mediator should find out who is solvent and who is not. The mediator's job is to shape a game for the players that will attract their interest and their enthusiasm and that will be clear to them.

Keywords: adversarial industry culture; casino gaming; construction disputes; enthusiasm; gamblers; risk allocation



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