Funding the Future of Mediation

IMI Patrons – Funding the Future of Mediation

The Challenge Facing Early Dispute Resolution

Mediation is recognized by many corporation users, governments, communities, and organizations as an effective way to resolve disputes. Using mediation to resolve conflict stimulates economic development. Nevertheless, mediation in most countries has begun to stall.  The early growth rates experienced in North America, Asia, Europe and Latin America have levelled off.  The main inhibiting factors are:

(1) the quality of mediation services remains variable, unreliable and opaque; and

(2) potential new users of mediation services do not understand why or how mediation works.

New initiatives aimed directly at stimulating user demand, principally based on increasing quality and promoting understanding, are desperately needed to remove the restraints and enable mediation to grow exponentially.

Consumers of dispute resolution services seek a voice to address their needs especially as companies expand globally transacting business in developing countries.

Addressing the Challenge

The International Mediation Institute (IMI) is the only user-led foundation operating internationally with the goals of elevating the quality of mediation, improving the acceptance of mediation by disputants.

IMI is the only international body actively supported not only by users, but also by the leading international alternative dispute resolution (ADR) service providers in the field and other stakeholders.  IMI is not a service provider.  It has no ADR service income-generating activities and does not compete in the field.  This gives IMI a unique, privileged responsibility to strive for the goals that will enable mediation and ADR processes to grow by encouraging collaborative and coordinated action among stakeholders.

IMI is totally reliant on grants and donations to achieve its goals.  Its overheads are small (under $/€200k per annum) because IMI is able to draw upon an extensive international network of thought leaders who give their time pro bono to assist IMI in fulfilling its mission.

Becoming a Patron of IMI can be welcomed in a number of different ways.  All benefactor levels enable donors to secure specific benefits for themselves.  Approved entitlement to tax deductibility is possible for the majority of donors.

“Mediation has come a long way, but still has much further to go.  The field now needs to evolve quickly into a true profession.  High minimum practice and ethical standards need to be set, made transparent and achieved internationally; users – customers – of mediation need to see these standards operating effectively.  More and better information must be made available by individual mediators about their skills, capabilities and personalities.  Quality and Transparency together will enable mediation to grow.”

Lord Woolf of Barnes
Chair, IMI Advisory Council
Lord Chief Justice of England & Wales – 2000-2005

IMI Vision and Mission

Vision Mission
Professional Mediation Worldwide Set and achieve high mediation standards
Promoting Consensus and Access to Justice Convene stakeholders and parties
Promote understanding and adoption of mediation
Disseminate skills for parties, counsel and mediators

Current and Historic IMI Patron donations

Diamond €100,000
GE Foundation, Shell International, American Arbitration Association
 Platinum   €50,000 – €100,000
International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), JAMS, Singapore Mediation Centre, Singapore, International Arbitration Centre, Bahrain Chamber for Dispute Resolution
 Gold   €10,000 – €50,000
 Silver  €1,000 – €10,000
 Bronze  €100 – €1,000

Diamond and Platinum donors are offered a cost-free (Diamond) or discounted (Platinum) audit of their conflict management operations or a staff mediation familiarization program adapted to their specific needs.  Experts selected by IMI from among the most informed and experienced professionals, often including former users, conduct audits and familiarization programs.

Targeted Grants

Patrons may contribute donations to IMI to aid and enable:

  • general fulfillment of the Mission of IMI;
  • development of key programs[1];
  • participation in the strategic leadership of the Global Pound Conference;
  • achievement of specific time-bound operational goals.

Grant performance reports are made and top level donors may participate in, or oversee, a funded program/s but cannot direct a specific outcome for the funded program/s.  Diamond and Platinum Level Patrons may join an IMI governance group.

More information

Deborah Masucci, IMI Chair                            [email protected]

Irena Vanenkova, IMI Executive Director       [email protected]

IMI 7-Year Anniversary Review 2007-2014    IMI in a Nutshell

[1] e.g. the web portal, operating the IMI Users Council and specific subject matter Taskforces and Committees, such as those on Ethics, Mediation Advocacy, Online Dispute Resolution, Investor-State mediation, Mediation Skills Assessor standards, and Hybrids. Scholarships to advance dispute resolution processes in developing countries can also be funded by a Patron.