Since 2018, the CEDR Foundation has been working on a major initiative to improve diversity and inclusion in civil and commercial mediation. We believe it is important that commercial mediators reflect the community that they serve.
That’s why the Foundation has liaised with a working group of mediators, lawyers and users of mediation to look at the barriers to diversity for gender, race and age in commercial mediation. Following this, we’ve compiled a report setting out a series of recommendations.
- An increase in the use of diverse role models to challenge stereotypes.
- Clearer pathways for progression for mediators from accreditation as a mediator to joining mediator panels.
- Unconscious bias training for mediator assessors, panel selectors and providers.
- A commitment to diverse mediator recommendations from providers and an increase in the use of blind CVs.
- Mediation providers and clients should measure and record how diverse mediator selection is.
The Problem in the UK:
- Just 33.6% of commercial mediators are women, and the average commercial mediation panel has 28.7% women.
- 96% of commercial mediators are white, compared with 86% of the general population. The proportions of Asian and Black commercial mediators are significantly below the general UK population.
- 5% of commercial mediators are over the age of 50 and whilst 56% of those training are under 50, this group makes up only 22.5% of those getting work.
Susanne Schuler, Director of Training and Consultancy:
“Through our diversity and inclusion initiatives, CEDR is working to implement active principles into all aspects of our company culture and the wider profession. We are striving to achieve representation in dispute resolution regardless of nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender or age.”