Mediation week

2020 ICC Mediation Week kicks off in Paris

  • 6 February 2020

Today, the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) welcomes more than 550 students, ADR professionals, academics and volunteers to its global headquarters in Paris, France for ICC Mediation Week—the world business organization’s largest educational event of the year.

On the agenda

From now until Wednesday, 12 February, 66 student teams will compete in almost 150 mock mediations for the chance to become the ICC International Commercial Mediation Competition champion. Each session is judged and mediated by a selection from more than 145 participating ADR professionals and academics from around the world.

Commenting on the event, João Carlos Cochlar, who represented Fundação Getulio Vargas of Law in Rio de Janeiro, said:

The ICC Mediation Competition is a life-changing experience that enhances spontaneity and interpersonal skills in a friendly and multi-cultural scenario. This experience is meaningful not only for mediation or negotiation, but for life, and it was a privilege to be part of [the event].”

Teams, professionals and volunteers are set to spend the day participating in trainings to understand their roles and the rules of the prestigious Competition. Day one of the event will wrap up with an Welcome Cocktail providing a networking experience for the global and diverse group of participants to get to know each other.

Past team member for Israel’s Bar Ilan University Rotem Newfield said:

“Meeting new people — law students like me from all over the world — was fun, interesting and eye-opening. I’m grateful that I was able to take part in such a unique opportunity.”

Preliminary Rounds take place from Friday to Sunday. From 8:00 am to 7:30 pm, university teams will showcase their negotiation skills at the mediation table, with only 16 teams going through to the next stage rounds, which will take place in the afternoon on Monday, 10 February.

Previous competitor, Divyansha Agrawal of O.P. Jindal Global University India said:

“[Students] get the opportunity to mediate in the presence of a real-life mediator and be judged by an accomplished panel of [professionals]. Irrespective of the result, participation in a Competition like this is a win-win deal already.”

On Monday, ADR professionals and academics of the Competition have the opportunity to focus on their own development with the 7th edition of the International Mediation Roundtable. Organised in partnership with the International Academy of Mediators, the 2020 event introduces a new format, a hands-on workshop designed to teach participants best practice techniques on how to deal with emotions during a mediation.

Long-time Mediation Week professional, Juan Pablo Schaeffer said:

“The [event] was an inspirational opportunity to share experiences and knowledge with the best representatives of the mediation community around the world. It is the best training for a passionate mediator.”

Once the announcement of the Quarter-Finalists has been made, student teams will either be hard at work studying up on their strategies for the next round of eliminations or enjoying the wonders of the French capital, while the professionals conclude their full day of activities with a networking cocktail. ICC Mediation Week professionals can discuss the skills and techniques learned in their half-day seminar.

Quarter-Finals will open day six of ICC Mediation Week on Tuesday, 11 February, following confirmation of the Semi-Finalists happening at 10:45 am. Event participants can then join a special session entitled, “Stories Mediators Tell”. Led by Competition veteran, Lela Porter Love, the session aims to have a diverse group of ADR professionals share the defining experiences that have helped shape them as mediators or discuss their inspiring mediation-related initiatives. The day concludes with Semi-Final sessions and acknowledgment of the 2020 Finalists and a Competition Party, held at one of Paris’ most popular nightclubs.

Polish ADR professional, Anna Saczuk said:

“[This event is] an unforgettable experience for both students and professionals…It shapes the future of tomorrow’s business relations [and] creates a new generation of business leaders.”

The Competition and Mediation Week concludes on Wednesday with a final between two university teams. A battle of skills and composure, the Final will see each team going head to head before a live audience and an international jury of leading ADR professionals. The winner of the 2020 edition will be announced at a celebratory Final Cocktail, uniting participants one last time before parting ways.

Rutgers University School of Law team member, Emily Davis said:

“My experience at the ICC Mediation Competition in Paris was second to none. I learned skills that have strengthened my legal career—and gained friendships and connections that will last a lifetime.”

Excited for what’s in store during ICC Mediation Week? Here’s three things you can expect from this top-level event and insight into why mediation matters now more than ever.