James South

Chief Executive, Senior Consultant & Mediator

Client Feedback
“Good at controlling the discussion so that the parties did not escalate.

English, Spanish

James South is Chief Executive of the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR).  As a mediator, facilitator, consultant and trainer, James has over 25 years of experience in over 30 countries, working with individuals, organisations and public institutions to prevent, manage and resolve conflict effectively.

A lawyer in his native New Zealand, he acts as a mediator both in the UK and internationally, specialising in corporate and commercial disputes, with particular experience in international commercial contracts, Insurance & Finance, Property, Sales of Goods & Services and Employment & Workplace. James also combines his mediating and consultancy skills to provide facilitation, neutral chairing and conflict coaching services to Boards, leadership teams and other groups which find themselves in conflict. James is a fluent Spanish speaker and trains in cross-cultural issues in mediation and has experience in mediating cross-border and cross-cultural disputes, recently mediating cases with Spanish and Austrian parties.

Recent feedback includes “He was fair and reasonable”; “James was excellent and had a good handle on things”; “He got to the heart of the problem straight away”.

As a trainer and dispute resolution consultant, he has extensive experience in delivering training and consultancy services to government, corporates, the judiciary and the courts, universities and international organisations and has worked in over 30 jurisdictions including  Egypt, Russia, USA, India, Pakistan, Cuba, Colombia, China, Croatia, Moldova and Vietnam, to name just a few.

James’ recent assignments have included Lead Expert to the International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group) on a global skills-based initiative to train board-level executives in the resolution of disputes and conflicts, in addition to International Expert to the Ministry of Justice of Moldova, funded by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, to roll-out mediation schemes across the court system.

In recent years, James has been working on Applied Training in the utilisation of the mediator skill set in new and developing areas such as at Board and Leadership level within organisations and in Investor-State Disputes, working with ICSID and the Energy Charter Secretariat to develop and deliver specialist training for mediators in Investor-State Disputes in Washington DC, Paris and Hong Kong.

James holds a Masters in Law (Distinction) in Dispute Prevention and Resolution from University of Westminster, London, He has taught ADR at Birkbeck College, University of London, London South Bank University, Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution, Pepperdine University, Los Angeles, and the University of San Francisco.

James currently sits on the Board of the International Mediation Institute (IMI) and previously was on the Board of the Civil Mediation Council (CMC) for England and Wales.


  • International Commercial Contracts
  • Employment & Workplace
  • Facilitation & Conflict Coaching
  • ICT
  • Insurance & Finance
  • Property
  • Public Sector
  • Sale of Goods & Services

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