For the past eight years, JAMS Weinstein International Fellow Andrew Wei-Min Lee and his colleague Vivian Feng Ying Yu have been teaching negotiation in Mainland China. Following is Mr. Lee’s experience creating the Chinese University Negotiation Competition.
China has a long history of using mediation as a means to address problems. However, there is very limited teaching of negotiation, mediation, arbitration or other forms of ADR in mainland Chinese universities.
We see raising awareness of domestic history and international practice in the field of ADR as a key part of providing better dispute resolution services in China. We also believe that by influencing students at China’s top universities today, we are supporting the greater understanding, acceptance and use of ADR for tomorrow.
In 2009, with the support of U.S. Agency for International Development and the University of Massachusetts, a national Chinese University Negotiation Competition was established. The goal was to use a national competition to encourage Chinese universities to develop and offer dispute resolution courses in their schools.
The winning team then has the opportunity to fly to the United States to further their studies in ADR and return home to China and be ADR flag-bearers.
A key part of the competition is to pair a Chinese faculty member with an overseas visitor to judge each round. This creates a shared experience by which both Chinese and western judges can interact, exchange and jointly mentor the students.
On May 12-13, 2012, the Leading Negotiation Institute of Shanghai and Zhejiang University in Hangzhou will host the fourth annual competition. We are honored and deeply appreciative that this year our judging panel will consist of Weinstein Fellows Dimitra Triantafyllou (Greece), Laila Ollapally (India), Vivian and myself, along with JAMS panelist Bruce Edwards.
By building on the relationships we developed and opportunities granted to us by the Weinstein Fellowship, this year’s competition will benefit from the input of world class mediators from India, Greece, Thailand and the United States working alongside Chinese ADR experts.
We believe this competition will continue to grow and inspire future generations of Chinese ADR leaders.
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