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Promoting the growth and development of court volunteer mediators

Court volunteer mediators are important partners of the State Courts. The State Courts regularly organise alternative dispute resolution (ADR) training workshops and networking sessions for court volunteer mediators.

This is so that court volunteer mediators can:

  • Develop currency in their skill sets.
  • Learn from and interact with one another.
  • Increase awareness of new developments in the ADR arena.

The State Courts will send court volunteer mediators an email invitation to upcoming events when details are available.

Past events

Find out more about past events organised.

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2023 as follows:

Navigating Disputes: Uncovering Perspectives and Crafting Amicable Resolutions

Highlights of the session included:

  • Presentation by Mr Bala Reddy (a former Principal District Judge) on how to effectively manage, understand, and resolve disputes. The presentation also covered various types of orders that are available to the courts and how knowledge of these orders can assist the mediator in working with the parties to come to an amicable agreement.
  • A panel discussion was moderated by District Judge (DJ) Koh Juay Kherng and featuring panellists DJ Marvin Bay and DJ Bryan Ong.
  • Real case studies were shared during the panel discussion, allowing participants to acquire a deeper comprehension of the cases shared and the process of amicably resolving disputes.

The session was held via Zoom on 1 December 2023 and was attended by close to 130 participants.

Ninety per cent of the respondents indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives. Ninety-four per cent felt that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the session.

View the Navigating Disputes Uncovering Perspectives and Crafting Amicable Resolutions presentation slides (PDF, 604 KB)

Mediating neighbour disputes – What you need to know about the Community Disputes Resolution Act 2015

Highlights of the session included:

  • Sharing on the Community Disputes Resolution Act 2015 (CDRA), an Act which provides an avenue for disputes between neighbours to be resolved and the importance of communication, key issues that are frequently encountered when claims are brought under this Act, and that filing a claim in court should be a measure of a last resort in such disputes. Presented by District Judge Winston Man who also spoke about what constitutes unreasonable interference and evidential challenges among other topics. 
  • Panel discussion moderated by District Judge Koh Juay Kherng with panellists District Judge Sheik Umar, District Judge Soh Weiqi, District Judge Winston Man and court volunteer mediator Mr David Hoicka. 

The session was held via Zoom on 9 June 2023 and was attended by close to 100 participants.

Hundred percent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives. Ninety-eight per cent felt that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the session.

View the Mediating neighbour disputes – What you need to know about the CDRA 2015 presentation slides (PDF, 817 KB).

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2022 as follows:

Helping Parties to Negotiate Constructively and Effectively Towards a Settlement

Highlights of the session included:

  • Sharing on ways in which a mediator may help parties prepare for and engage in more constructive and effective negotiations with each other towards amicably resolving their dispute. Presented by mediator and mediation trainer, Mr David Lim.
  • Panel discussion moderated by District Judge Dorothy Ling with panellists District Judge Sheik Umar, District Judge Ang Feng Qian, mediator and mediation trainer Mr David Lim, and court volunteer mediator Mr Kamalarajan Chettiar.

The session was held via Zoom on 11 November 2022 and was attended by close to 100 participants.

Ninety-seven per cent of the respondents indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives. Hundred per cent felt that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

View the Helping Parties to Negotiate Constructively and Effectively Towards a Settlement presentation slides (PDF, 1876 KB)

Notable Court Dispute Resolution cases involving Psychological and Social Issues

Highlights of the session included:

  • Sharing on notable cases involving psychological and social aspects which also covered various community resources available and the importance of self-care and self-awareness in transference and counter-transference issues. Presented by Senior Court Counsellor and Psychologist at the Centre for Specialist Services of the State Courts, Mr Goh Jun Yan.
  • Panel discussion moderated by District Judge Sheik Umar with panellists District Judge Julian Chin, District Judge Lee Li Choon, Senior Court Counsellor Mr Goh Jun Yan, and court volunteer mediator Ms Viviene Sandhu.

The session was held via Zoom on 10 June 2022 and was attended by 113 court volunteer mediators.

Ninety-four per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives. Ninety-two per cent felt that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

View the Notable CDRC cases involving Psychological and Social Issues presentation slides (PDF, 529 KB).

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2021 as follows:

Ethics for Mediators

The Ethics for Mediators presentation held on 19 November 2021 via Zoom was attended by 111 court volunteer mediators.

Highlights of the session included:

  • Senior Consultant of Sage Mediation Ms Low Lih Jeng (a former district judge) sharing about maintaining neutrality and good ethical conduct during mediation, and how to spot red flags and navigate grey areas while upholding the duty of a peacemaker.
    • Case scenarios were also shared during the presentation and many court volunteer mediators actively shared their views on fairness and impartiality.
  • A panel discussion moderated by District Judge (DJ) Carrie Chan and featuring panellists DJ Koh Juay Kherng, DJ Karolyn Gin, and court volunteer mediator Mr Steven Lam.
    • The participants shared their experience in maintaining proper ethical behaviour and conduct during mediation.

Ninety-six per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives and ninety-eight per cent felt that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

View the Ethics for Mediators presentation slides (PDF, 1099 KB)

Applying Conflict-coaching Techniques in Mediation presentation

The Applying Conflict-coaching Techniques in Mediation presentation held on 4 June 2021 via Zoom was attended by 108 court volunteer mediators.

Highlights of the session included:

  • Mediator & mediation trainer Mr David Lim (a former district judge) exploring how a mediator may make use of conflict-coaching techniques to help parties clarify their perspectives of the situation, set clear and achievable goals for the resolution of the dispute, and devise actionable plans to implement these goals to resolve the dispute amicably.
  • A panel discussion was moderated by District Judge (DJ) Carrie Chan and featuring panellists Mr David Lim, DJ Koh Juay Kherng, DJ Sarah Tan, and court volunteer mediator Mr See Chern Yang.
    • The participants shared how they had applied coaching techniques to their cases and how these techniques have helped in the cases before them.

Ninety-seven per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives and that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from this training.

View the Applying Conflict-coaching Techniques in Mediation presentation slides  (PDF, 2205 KB)

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2020 as follows:

Managing Court Users with Mental Health Issues presentation

The Managing Court Users with Mental Health Issues presentation session held on 20 November 2020 via Zoom was attended by a total of 89 court volunteer mediators.

Highlights of the session included:

  • Senior court counsellors Samantha Sim and Valerie Chua touching on common mental health issues and giving tips on managing court users with mental health issues in various scenarios.
  • A panel discussion after the presentation, moderated by District Judge (DJ) Janet Wang from the Court Dispute Resolution Cluster (CDRC) and featuring panellists DJ Sandra Looi from the Community Court Tribunals (CCT), court counsellors Ms Samantha Sim and Ms Valerie Chua, and Dr Ronald Paul Ng, a court volunteer mediator from the CDRC.

It was a lively and fruitful session as the participants enthusiastically raised queries and shared their own experience dealing with different types of court users with mental health issues.

Ninety-eight per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives, and ninety-one per cent of them indicated that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

Mediating in the Shadow of COVID-19 presentation

The Mediating in the Shadow of COVID-19 presentation session held on 5 June 2020 via Zoom was attended by a total of 102 court volunteer mediators from the CDRC and CCT.

Highlights of the session included:

  • DJ David Lim discussing how COVID-19 has affected the practice of mediation.
    • He also highlighted the adaptations mediators have to make to their mediation techniques in order to remain effective when mediating (whether online or face-to-face) in the post-Covid19 era.

The participants also enthusiastically shared their experience with remote mediations that they had conducted so far.

Ninety-six per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives, and ninety-eight per cent of them indicated that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from this training.

View the Mediating in the Shadow of COVID-19 presentation slides (PDF, 2639 KB).

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2019 as follows:

Problem Solving in Mediation presentation

The Problem Solving in Mediation presentation session was held on 26 September 2019.

Highlights of the session included:

  • DJ David Lim revisiting the question of problem-solving in mediation and exploring some possible approaches that may help mediators work more efficiently and effectively with parties to resolve disputes during court mediation.
  • A panel discussion after the presentation comprising of DJs and court volunteer mediators from the Court Dispute Resolution Cluster (CDRC) as panellists.
    • The participants also shared their mediation experiences and exchanged their views with the panelists.
  • A briefing on the State Courts towers to familiarise court volunteer mediators with the new building.

Ninety-five per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives and hundred per cent of them indicated that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from this training.

View the Problem Solving in Mediation presentation slides (PDF, 720 KB).

Head vs Heart, Ego vs Conscience: Dealing with Intrapersonal Conflicts in Mediations presentation

The Head vs Heart, Ego vs Conscience: Dealing with Intrapersonal Conflicts in Mediations presentation session was held on 16 April 2019.

Highlights of the session included:

  • DJ David Lim sharing his views and experience on how a mediator may help a party deal with intrapersonal conflicts and enable them to negotiate more constructively during mediation.
    • He also touched on how mediators can avoid unhelpful negotiation styles and consequent impasse.
  • A panel discussion after the presentation comprising of DJs and court volunteer mediators from the CDRC as panellists.
    • The participants also shared their mediation experiences and raised queries during the panel discussion.

Ninety-six per cent of the participants indicated that the training session met their expectations and objectives and hundred per cent of them indicated that they would be able to apply what they have learnt from this session.

View the Head vs Heart, Ego vs Conscience: Dealing with Intrapersonal Conflicts in Mediations presentation slides (PDF, 1405 KB).

There were 2 training sessions organised in 2018 as follows:

Mediator-Lawyer Collaboration presentation

The Mediator-Lawyer Collaboration presentation session was held on 21 November 2018.

Highlights of the session included:

  • DJ David Lim sharing his views and insights on how mediators, whether legally or non-legally trained, can build alliances with and collaborate constructively with lawyers representing parties during mediation.
  • A panel discussion after the presentation comprising of DJs and court volunteer mediators from the Court Dispute Resolution Cluster (CDRC), and a lawyer as panellists.
    • The participants also shared their mediation experiences and had a candid and open exchange of views during the panel discussion.

The feedback about the session was very positive, with hundred per cent of the participants indicating that the training session had met their expectations and objectives, and eighty-three per cent indicating that the duration of the training was just right.

Hundred per cent of the respondents shared that they will be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

View the Mediator-Lawyer Collaboration presentation slides (PDF, 801 KB) and welcome remarks by Principal District Judge Thian Yee Sze (PDF, 195 KB).

Working with Individuals with Mental Health Disorders presentation

The Working with Individuals with Mental Health Disorders presentation session was held on 6 June 2018.

Highlights of the session included:

  • Psychologists from the Family Justice Courts (FJC), Ms Leong Shengyu and Ms Sylvia Tan speaking about how mediators can effectively communicate with persons with personality disorders or psychological issues, anger, paranoia or anti-social issues which may hamper a constructive mediation process.
  • A panel discussion after the presentation comprising of the 2 psychologists, and DJs David Lim and Koh Juay Khern as panellists.

The feedback about the session was very positive, with ninety-three per cent of the participants indicating that the session had met their expectations and objectives and ninety-eight per cent indicating that the duration of the training was sufficient.

Ninety-three per cent of the participants shared that they will be able to apply what they have learnt from the training session.

View the Working with Individuals with Mental Health Disorders presentation slides (PDF, 2009 KB) and welcome remarks by Principal District Judge Thian Yee Sze (PDF, 121 KB).

There was 1 training sessions organised in 2017 as follows:

Drafting Settlement Agreements presentation

The Drafting Settlement Agreements presentation session was held on 14 September 2017.

The feedback about the session was positive with ninety-three per cent of the participants indicating that the session had met the expectations and objectives.

View the Drafting settlement agreements presentation slides (PDF, 1980 KB) and welcome remarks by Principal District Judge James Leong (PDF, 1909 KB).


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