University of Auckland: Law students triumph at mediation competition

Students Britney Clasper and Bronwyn Wilde represented Auckland in the final mediation, which concerned a dispute between a small textile manufacturer and a distribution company specialising in products for tourists. The factual problem, based on a real case, involved a relationship breakdown following an incomplete product order, due to employee restrictions brought about from Covid-19.

This is the third consecutive year that a group from the University of Auckland has won the competition.
This is the third consecutive year that a group from the University of Auckland has won the competition.

The whole team comprising Arianna Bacic, Britney Clasper, Andrew O’Malley Shand, and Bronwyn Wilde, coached by Matthew Jackson and Isabelle Kwek, competed against pairs from Belarus, Turkey, the UK, and Germany, to reach the semi-final against the University of New South Wales.

The competition, which usually takes place in Paris each year, was held online due to travel restrictions resulting from the global pandemic.

As winners of the competition, the four team members each receive a place in ADR ODR International’s Civil-Commercial Mediation Training Course, which can be completed either virtually or in-person in London.

“ICCMW is a truly international competition, which requires you to adapt your skills to unique styles and cultural differences. It’s a rare experience and I would encourage anyone to give it a go,” said team member Bronwyn Wilde.

Professional mediator and Competition Final judge Thomas Valenti said “The session showed some interesting use of information gathering and trust-building, all designed to look forward to building a future relationship. The women showed a depth of knowledge of interest-based negotiation and the benefits of mediating a dispute that caused a disruption to both parties, through no fault of either.”

“We are incredibly proud of how the team has represented the University of Auckland, New Zealand, and their supporters. Moreover, it has been rewarding to see how the team has grown and learnt from each round during ICCMW and thrived in this relatively new frontier of online dispute resolution,” said coach, Matthew Jackson.

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