CSRI Company-Community Dispute Resolution Films Win Leading Industry Award

The biennial awards by the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), the largest independent alternative dispute resolution body in Europe, were announced in London on 29 November, 2012. A series of four films produced by CSRI won the Best Communication or Publication category in what CEDR called "an especially strong category". The films tell three distinct stories about companies and communities that have found themselves in varying degrees of conflict and looked for a way out through dialogue. In each instance, the parties to the conflict used a neutral third-party mediator to help them craft a process through which they could address concerns and progressively resolve their core conflicts. 

The first video, "Making Monkey Business", involves a hydro-electric power plant and surrounding communities in the Philippines; the second, "Putting Ourselves in Their Shoes", involves a copper mine and indigenous communities in the Peruvian Andes; and the third, "The Only Government We See" involves an oil and gas company and local communities in the Niger Delta. Each of the films tells of the origins of the conflict, describes how and why both company and communities came to consider mediated dialogue as a way forward, and relates the processes that unfolded, with their progress and setbacks, and the outcomes they achieved. The stories are told uniquely in the voices of those who took part: community members, company representatives, non-governmental organizations and the mediators. 

The fourth film in the series interweaves all three stories to highlight a range of common themes that emerge, in the hope that they may offer new insights to others who find themselves looking for a way out of company-community conflict. The films were produced by the Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative at Harvard Kennedy School on behalf of the mandate of the former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Business and Human Rights, Professor John Ruggie. 

According to CEDR: "The film seriesmakes a compelling case for ADR methods and processes, using real life corporate-community case studies to show the immediate and long term benefits of facilitated dialogue."

The films are all available on Shift's Recommended Resources page. Caroline Rees, Shift's President, was the Executive Producer of all four films. The films were produced with the generous support of the Government of Norway, the Compliance Advisor/Ombudsman of the World Bank Group, the International Bar Association and the Government of Germany.