Professor Sheila Purcell discusses designing ADR programs, Hastings' many ADR opportunities for students, and the future of dispute resolution after Covid
CNDR Director Sheila Purcell was interviewed on the conflict resolution podcast We Can Find a Way, produced by Idil Elveris of Istanbul, Turkey who currently lives in London. She is a former student of Professor Purcell’s from the International Court ADR Institute at UC Hastings, which educates international judges, attorneys and mediators interested in starting or enhancing dispute resolution programs in their home countries. Since its inception, the Institute has hosted professionals from over 40 countries.
Professor Purcell has been a Clinical Professor and the Director of Hastings’ Center for Negotiation and Dispute Resolution (CNDR) since 2012, and has lead the Center to numerous awards, a position in the top ten ADR programs in law schools, and built its’ international reputation as a leader in the creation of mediation programs. Prior to joining CNDR, Professor Purcell spent 16 years designing and directing a public/private dispute resolution partnership at the San Mateo Superior Court.
In this podcast, Professor Purcell is interviewed about her career and about creating one of the first, and leading, court ADR programs in the country; the importance of connecting people and focusing on the design of a system; creation of the International Court ADR Institute; her role as the Director of CNDR overseeing the Center’s many opportunities for experiential learning, such as the ADR Team and the Clinic; and, how technology will lead the future of ADR.
Some highlights from the interview:
- On the importance of thoughtfully constructing a dispute resolution system: “I think it’s great for students if they can take Dispute System Design, because it exposes them to the idea that these systems are built by someone and they have implications when they are built. A lot of policy decisions that impact the quality of justice are made at the design stage….If you want to create a vision and make it real, what are the steps?”
- On the International Court ADR Institute: Envisioning, Designing, and Implementing Court ADR: I kept getting wonderful requests from people to come visit and observe because they wanted to learn how we do it. Because we were one of the early [Court ADR] programs, they would find us and we would try and help them, but I never felt like I really had time to help these foreign visitors. … So I developed a week-long curriculum for people from around the world who want to build programs in their countries.”