Advanced Training for Company-Community Mediation in Complex Environments

Update: Applications are now closed

ACCESS Facility and The Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town (GSB) announce the first

Advanced Training for

Company-Community Mediation in Complex Environments

19-25 July 2015 in Cape Town

Course fees and accommodation will be sponsored for a select group of practitioners under a generous grant from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Successful candidates will receive certification from the Graduate School of Business.


With its focus on helping parties find common ground and a collective vision for moving forward, mediation can be a useful intervention for companies and communities. But in places lacking the legal, social or political infrastructure commensurate with the range of challenges posed by large-scale company operations, mediation – and the role of the mediator – faces heightened complexity.

Going beyond the core principles of interest-based mediation, the course helps mediators develop strategic understanding of the range of tensions and complexities inherent in company-community conflict. Mediators will learn principles of conflict sensitive intervention and Do No Harm; what it means to operate to international standards; how to act as stewards of processes that are broadly inclusive and legitimate; and how to help design and manage durable systems for resolving company-community conflicts.

The course is aimed at two profiles of experienced dispute resolution professionals:

  • Practitioners with substantial experience in company-community mediation who will reflect on their practice and acquire new skills, and may act as trainers of company-community mediators in the future;
  • Practitioners without substantial experience in company-community mediation, for whom the course is a step towards developing a practice in this sector.

Preference will be given to candidates living and working in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Eastern Europe. The course will require the full attention of participants from an opening dinner in Cape Town on 19 July 2015 through the morning of 25 July. Participants should anticipate substantial pre-work as well as a written assignment to be submitted at the end of the course. They will be evaluated on both their written and practical work. Successful candidates will receive certification from the Graduate School of Business. The course fee will be waived for this pilot programme, and accommodation in Cape Town will be covered from 19-25 July. Participants are expected to cover their own travel costs.

ACCESS Facility is a global, multi-stakeholder platform supporting rights-compatible, interest-based problem solving to prevent and resolve conflicts between companies and communities. The Graduate School of Business is a leading business school with a particular focus on environments of uncertainty, complexity and inequality.

This pilot training at the GSB is part of a larger project aimed at increasing the number of highly skilled mediators who specialize in rights compatible, interest-based dispute resolution between companies and communities.