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Online Dispute Resolution: Have You Heard of Cyber Week?

Each year the Werner Institute at Creighton University hosts an annual virtual Conference for Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) called Cyber Week. In its 17th year, this annual conference is now hosted via ADRhub. ODR consists of dispute resolution practices (mediation, negotiation, arbitration, etc…) that use technology to facilitate the resolution of disputes between parties across the spectrum from e-commerce disputes to family disputes. This year, Cyber Week was held during November 3, 2014 – November 7, 2014.Cyber Week

This free virtual conference focuses on the new developments and innovations regarding dispute resolution online. This week’s conference included discussion forums where participants had the opportunity to engage in dialogue via chat, such as topics pertaining to Cyber-Safety and Ethical Considerations for practitioners. . Webinars including “Challenges and Innovations in Responding to Digital Bullying” and demonstrations using virtual mediation rooms gave participants a feel for how these tools work. This engaging week also hosted an Ethics Essay contest and an e-Mediation competition. The Texas Conflict Coach radio program returns for its 4th year hosting a program. This year focuses on “Tech for Justice:Using Technology to Expand Access to Justice.”  As technologies continue to advance, more businesses and transactions are moving online. Cyber Week introduces participants with the technology tools and strategies for managing and preventing conflicts online.

Who can attend?
Anyone who is interested in participating in Cyber Week may register. Participants range from academics, scholars, ODR and dispute resolution practitioners, and the general public.

What if I missed Cyber Week?
By visiting the Cyber Week home page on ADRhub.com you can access the archived webinars from previous years. And, don’t forget Cyberweek will return in November 2015 for its 18th annual event.

How can I learn more about ODR?

The Texas Conflict Coach® website has several programs regarding ODR. Some programs that may interest you are:
Tech For Better, Not For Worse: Online Dispute Resolution In Everyday Life with guests Bill Warters, Ph.D and Colin Rule as they share suggestions for communication strategies to foster online relationships.
Supporting Conflict Resolution Skills in Social Media and Online Forums with guests Leah Wing and Tom Murrary provide tools to foster better communication and conflict resolution skills for online relationships.

We often focus on tools, strategies, and third parties available to assist parties in conflict offline, and rarely speak to the resources available online. Next time you are in conflict, remember you are not alone. There are resources and services available to help resolve your dispute virtually. I encourage you to join ADRhub.com, participate in Cyber Week, and learn how you can make a difference by simply using technology to resolve disputes.

By Tracy Culbreath
Graduate Student, University of Baltimore – Negotiation and Conflict Management Program

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Supporting Conflict Resolution Skills in Social Media and Online Forums

To learn more about Cyberweek and Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) activities, visit ADRHub.com.

Leah Wing

Tom Murray

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Social media and the Internet are transforming society, providing new benefits but also new hazards. Some have suggested that online communication and collaboration may lead to decreased civility, mutual understanding, and communicative clarity, as compared with face-to-face methods. Such negative trends can occur, but are they inevitable? We have been investigating whether online communication tools can actually support more skillful communication and deeper mutual understanding, especially in situations involving conflict, controversial topics, or differences in goals and perspectives.

What if online interactions could be designed to support more empathy, self-reflection, perspective taking, civility, and curiosity? Our preliminary research on new tools which support these abilities have found that they do foster better communication and conflict resolution skills in people engaged in online interactions. In this discussion we will explore these issues, giving some examples, and speak about tools for supporting positive conflict resolution skill use for social media and online communication.

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