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The Discourses of Dispute Resolution

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Edited By Vijay K. Bhatia, Christopher N. Candlin and Maurizio Gotti

This volume presents some of the findings from a project on various aspects of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), including conciliation, mediation, and arbitration. To study the discursive practices of ADR today, an international initiative has been undertaken by a group of specialists in discourse analysis, law, and arbitration from more than twenty countries. The chapters in this volume draw on discourse-based data (narrative, documentary and interactional) to investigate the extent to which the ‘integrity’ of ADR principles is maintained in practice, and to what extent there is an increasing level of influence from litigative processes and procedures. The primary evidence for such practices comes from textual and discourse-based studies, ethnographic observations, and narratives of experience on the part of experts in the field, as well as on the part of some of the major corporate stakeholders drawn from commercial sectors.

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GIROLAMO TESSUTO US Commercial Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures : Linguistic and Discoursal Features of a Genre in Action 231

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GIROLAMO TESSUTO US Commercial Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures: Linguistic and Discoursal Features of a Genre in Action 1. Introduction It is widely recognised that mediation and arbitration, as non-judicial processes, are the traditional methods of dispute settlement of controversies arising between individuals, businesses and countries. In the United States, commercial mediation and arbitration are often used to assist in the resolution of disputes, arising, for example, in the construction, labour and shareholder industry, and may operate volun- tarily on an ad hoc or institutional basis or by governmental institution or organisation. Although, in the past, the US government intervened in the resolution of commercial arbitration by statute (Interstate Commerce Act 1887; Federal Arbitration Act 1925), today’s practice is for self- regulatory institutions and organisations to intervene in the parties’ decision to mediate or arbitrate in a variety of disputes. This is the case of US reputable organisations, such as the National Arbitration Forum (commercial and civil disputes), FINRA (security industry) and the American Arbitration Association (AAA), providing indepen- dent arbitration and mediation services. While such institutions play an important role in US law, their operation of arbitration and media- tion processes and procedures is certainly prompted by the major com- mercial developments in the world economy. The present analysis investigates Commercial Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures (CARMP), as coded by the AAA, which operates under minimised statutory intervention. As a professional Girolamo Tessuto 232 genre resulting from the increasing bureaucratisation of written disci- plinary discourse practices on the web,...

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