I’m just returning from the International Bar Association meetings in Sydney (10/8 – 13). I gave two presentations as part of the franchise committee and attended multiple mediation committee meetings. Thousands of lawyers from all over the world in attendance. Mediation as an approach to dispute resolution is alive, well and growing world-wide. It offers parties the opportunity to pursue forward looking solutions to their disputes, rather than relive old grievances that only wound again. It also calls for a special kind of lawyering skill and restraint to maximize its potential benefits. I’m off this week to the American Bar Association Forum on Franchising annual meeting in Palm Desert, CA where discussion of the benefits of mediation in franchise disputes will be my focus. Report to follow.