Alternatywne formy rozwiązywania konfliktów na uniwersytecie amerykańskim

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UNIVERSITY MEDIATION SERVICES

University of Virginia

ABOUT UMS

University Mediation Services (UMS) was founded in 1996 to provide the students and community of the University of Virginia an alternative form of conflict resolution and to educate the community about the advantages and tools of the mediation process. It is a University agency and student-run organization that provides alternative dispute resolution services to the University community, as long as one of the disputing parties is a student, or group of students, at the University of Virginia.

OUR MISSION

The primary mission of the University Mediation Services is to provide and to facilitate effective conflict resolution at the University of Virginia. UMS will provide its services to willing disputants in the community in their voluntary attempt to reach mutually satisfying agreements. It is an approach that gives students the opportunity to assume control of a conflict and responsibility for their actions.

The secondary mission of the University Mediation Services is to educate the University community about the methods, skills, and attitudes fundamental to mediation and the uses of mediation both formally and informally to reduce conflict on Grounds.

SCOPE

UMS mediates all cases that it deems appropriate for mediation as long as the disputants are willing to choose mediation as their form of conflict resolution. At least one of the parties must be a registered student of the University. UMS provides its service on a non-discriminatory basis and is comprised entirely of student mediators. UMS can mediate cases from all aspects of life, including roommate and neighbor disputes, relationship issues, bill payment conflicts, noise complaints, academic responsibilities, and conflicts within or between student groups. The scope of cases that can be mediated is vast and is not limited to the given examples. Contact the UMS office if you would like to know if a particular case would be appropriate for the mediation process.

Staff/student dispute resolution is ‘inadequate’

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Staff/student dispute resolution is ‘inadequate’, says study

Times Higher Education,  11 August 2009

Despite progress, fragmented arrangements leave institutions vulnerable to reputational damage. Melanie Newman reports

Universities’ arrangements for dealing with disputes involving staff and students are inadequate, according to a new report from the Improving Dispute Resolution taskforce.

The group, which is funded by the Higher Education Funding Council for England, states that forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), in particular mediation, are being used much more widely in relation to staff than students.

“In most institutions, it appears that the human resources or personnel section is taking the lead in the introduction of mediation, and student provision is lagging behind,” the report, Disputes in your Institution: Lessons to be Learned, says. “This also means that there is likely to be inadequate provision for the use of ADR where a dispute involves both staff and students.”

The study also states that ADR arrangements tend to be fragmented, which means that disputes could take longer to resolve, making reputational damage more likely.

The project’s leader, Gillian Evans, emeritus professor of medieval theology and intellectual history at the University of Cambridge, said: “We are pleased to note how many universities are beginning to see the benefits of using ADR. There is now an encouragingly long list of in-house mediation services and it is growing all the time.”

But too many universities were still exposed, she added: “Disputes cost money, use up administrative time and can leave a huge dent in a university’s reputation.

“A student from the US who goes home with a sense of injustice can spread the word. The same student who has had a chance to talk things through… in mediation and work out a creative resolution with the university can go away telling a quite different story.”

Last summer, the taskforce, which is funded by Hefce’s Leadership, Governance and Management Fund, flagged up ways of addressing “causes for concern” or “systemic” problems in institutions.

Universities need a “radical change of mindset” to deal with such issues, Professor Evans said, echoing concerns raised in the recent Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Committee report, Students and Universities, which says that whistleblowers are inadequately protected.

Professor Evans said: “Management has to learn not to see such things as attacks but as potentially useful suggestions.”