Dr. Bob is a Registered Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (Mediator) and has been actively practicing mediation since the mid 1990’s.
Mediation is a process in which the participants, with the support of a mediator, identify issues, develop options, consider alternatives and make decisions about future actions and outcomes. The mediator acts as a third party to support participants to reach their own decision.
The mediator(s) may assist the participants to:
a) Communicate with each other; and
b) Identify, clarify and explore disputed issues; and
c) Generate and evaluate options; and
d) Consider alternative processes for bringing any dispute or conflict to a conclusion; and
e) Reach an agreement or make a decision about how to move forward and/or enhance their communication in a way that addresses participants’ mutual needs with respect to their individual interests based upon the principle of self determination.
Mediation processes are primarily facilitative processes. The mediator provides assistance in managing a process which supports the participants to make decisions about future actions and outcomes.
Some mediators may also use a ‘blended’ process that involves mediation and incorporates an ‘advisory’ component, or a process that involves the provision of expert information and advice, where it enhances the decision-making of the participants provided that the participants agree that such advice can be provided. Such processes may be defined as ‘conciliation’ or ‘evaluative mediation.’ Practitioners who manage such processes and provide expert advice are required to have appropriate expertise (see Section 2(7) of the Mediator Practice Standards below) and obtain clear consent from the participants in respect of undertaking any ‘blended’ advisory process.
Mediation processes are a complement to, not a substitute for, the need for participants to obtain individual legal or other expert advice and support. Mediation processes may not be appropriate for all individuals or all circumstances.
From “Australian National Mediator Standards” (March 2012)
Mediator Practice Standards are available at:
If you are unable to access the Internet please request a copy of the standards from your mediaton
Traditionally, mediators were not permitted to share their opinions, and only worked to facilitate an agreement between the parties. Under Australian law, mediators with qualifications in other professional areas may provide “Advisory Mediation” with the consent of both parties. For example, if parents were working on a financial agreement and their mediator was a qualified accountant, the accountant could provide financial or tax advice to guide the agreement, if the parents consented.
As a clinical psychologist, Dr. Bob is able to offer the benefit of an impartial professional with over 30 years of experience, to advise parents of what may or may not be in their children’s best interests. This advice has no authority; parents are free to ignore it. Typically parents genuinely want what is best for their children, and realize they are not sufficiently detached to make that assessment by themselves. For that reason, Advisory Mediation can offer a great deal more than traditional mediation.