The competency of the parties' advocates in mediations is widely recognized as a crucial factor in securing the best possible settlements. In order to establish a professional and technical basis for enabling disputing parties to identify the right people to advise and represent them in mediations Ithe international Mediation Institute, IMI, has developed a comprehensive set of Competency Criteria of Mediation Advocates/Advisors.
ACB offers Qualifying Assessment Programs to test the competency of Mediation Advocates and Mediation Advisors to enable them to become an IMI Certified Mediation Advocate/Advisor, a professional Mediation Advocate certified by the International Mediation Institute, IMI. In fact ACB was the first organization worldwide to be recognized to offer an IMI Mediation Advocacy Qualifying Assessment Program. ACB's Chair was also the chair of the International Mediation Advocacy Task Force of IMI.
ACB Foundation is a conflict resolution & prevention research center. The foundation is specialized in selection of qualified neutrals or negotiation professionals for commercial cases, as well as representing the interests of the private sector in the area of dispute resolution and negotiation. ACB Foundation was formed in 1998 by (legal) professional associations and businesses – including the Dutch Employers Association VNO-NCW - that saw a need for a high-quality infrastructure in the field of conflict management & commercial mediation representing their interests. The aim of the foundation is to promote the use and quality of commercial negotiation, deal facilitation and mediation in business disputes and especially to support development of professional users of mediation services, including mediation advocates as well as legal mediators.
ACB Mediation Advocacy Qualifications
To candidates who successfully absolve the Post Experience Mediation Advocacy Assessment Program: ACB foundation offers the title ‘IMI Certified Mediation Advocate'/ 'ACB Accredited Mediation Advocate' for those having a legal background and/or having fully completed a legal university education (lawyers, judges, notaries, law students, corporate counsel, etc.). The title ‘IMI Certified Mediation Advisor' /'ACB accredited Mediation Advisor' will be offered to everybody else who successfully absolves the Post Experience assessment (managers, financial experts, psychologists, etc.). Those who can fall into both categories are allowed to use both titles interchangeably.
Candidates who successfully absolve a post training mediation advocacy assessment are offered the title ACB recognized Professional Mediation Advocate.
ACB Mediation Advocacy Assessment
The ACB assessment consists of a detailed interview based on prior submitted written materials and dilemmas and strategic choices for mediation advocates/advisors. The materials include a case study consisting of a general description and confidential background information for the party that the applicant has represented, including a mediation representation plan, a mediation briefing for the mediator, a draft opening statement for the applicant and his/her client, as well as a (draft) settlement agreement. The assessment is also based on a self-evaluation of the advocate/advisor’s role and competency for this case.
In order to be eligible to enroll in the ACB Mediation Advocacy Post Experience Assessment program an applicant must have real life prior experience as a mediation advocate in at least 5 actual cases or 50 hours of mediation advocacy. An excemption is made for IMI Certified Mediators, or mediators having acted as sole mediators in at least 10 cases/200 hours (in countries where there are no Qualifying Assessment Programs for IMI Certification).