On the face of it clarity and certainty would always appear to be preferable to ambiguity, in order that people know where they stand and can plan and act accordingly. However, in a recent article Fintan O’Toole reflected on the position of Northern Ireland in the Brexit negotiations and concluded: “…stopping the violence meant creating…

The U.K.’s decision to leave the EU and the voting in of the protectionist Donald Trump to the US presidency has drawn both the UK and the USA into the Nash Trap. U.S. mathematician John Nash (the movie ‘A Beautiful Mind’) postulated that Adam Smith’s declaration that ‘In competition, individual ambition serves the common good’…

I am at my desk, an hour after the conclusion of a really fascinating event here in Edinburgh, in which my colleague, Charlie Woods, and I acted as mediators in a simulation of a mediated process involving 10 delegations representing different interests in the current Brexit negotiations. With over 50 participants, allocated randomly to one…

Editorial note: Given the high level of interest in our posts which address Brexit, the following detailed analysis of the Supreme Court’s decision on the Brexit process by Maria Kendrick, Visiting Lecturer and PhD candidate at King’s College London, may be of interest to our readers. The judgment of the Supreme Court handed down on 24 January 2017 by…

Raymond Williams, Resources of Hope (published posthumously in 1989), p. 118 I write and will upload this blog on the eve of my departure for Paris and the ICC’s 12th International Commercial Mediation Competition. On the ‘due date’ for this blog, I’ll be somewhere between Auckland and London. Again, it will be my huge pleasure…

I have just read Ian Macduff’s recent Kluwer blog (26 November: “Upheaval and resilience: a note from the Shaky Isles”). What a privilege it is, in this blog, to follow Ian’s erudite writing. He captures so well the spirit of the age, with all its uncertainty, tragedy, hope and opportunity. On that theme, my wife…

In the weeks since the Brexit vote and, more recently, the US Presidential elections, both of which caught pollsters, media and just about everybody you and I know by surprise, there’s a vocabulary that has become both familiar and, in New Zealand’s experience, prescient. Look over recent articles online on any major news or aggregator…

Rather than use Brexit and the US elections as introductory examples of dramatic change, I’m going to use yesterday’s seismic event in Chicago instead. Yesterday, the Irish rugby team beat New Zealand’s All Blacks for the first time ever (111 years). If that hasn’t changed the landscape of rugby, I don’t know what will. Anyway,…

The decision today of the UK High Court, that the government cannot trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty and begin formal exit negotiations with the EU without approval of Parliament, is a setback for the UK prime minister Theresa May. Given the further entrenchment of opposing positions in light of this judgment, Michael Leathes’ recent…

It is unusual times when the Church can be seen to be more progressive in certain matters than the State but this may actually be such a time. The UK has reached a stage in its history where polarized views and a lack of respect between the people who hold those views predominates. As the…