Mediators aided by neuroscience

By Victoria Basham 28 October 2015 at 10:00 BST Mediators and other practitioners of alternative dispute resolution are using information gleaned from neuroscience to help clients through a conflict-ridden process. Lightspring Paul Zak, director of the Center for Neuroeconomic Studies, began speaking to and teaching mediators five years ago. ‘Mediation and law are ripe for social neuroscience in particular,’ Mr Zak says. ‘We’ve made great advances in the field in the last 10 years.’ Building trust ‘We know people experience litigation as traumatic,’ says San Francisco mediator Elizabeth Bader, who uses techniques such as mirroring to calm clients by reflecting back their emotions. ‘Mirroring,’ she notes, ‘creates trust, and you can slowly start to move them out of a highly activated state.’ Re-establishing connections Advocates of neuroscience-directed mediation such as…

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