ABA’s New ‘Civic Fusion’ Explains How Mediators Help Disputing Parties Reach Agreements on Complex Public Policy Issues
CHICAGO, Nov. 26, 2012 — Civic Fusion: Mediating Polarized Public Disputes, is a new book by internationally renowned mediator Susan Podziba and published by the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution.
Drawing on the author’s 25 years of experience in public policy mediation, Civic Fusion:
- Describes ‘civic fusion,’ a phenomenon whereby people with passionately different political positions bond to address common public goals without sacrificing core values;
- Examines the ways in which passion, power and conflict can fuel successful mediation outcomes; and
- Teaches by example through an in-depth evaluation of three of the author’s past projects:
- Secret talks among pro-life and pro-choice leaders in the wake of fatal attacks at two women’s health clinics in Massachusetts;
- Regulatory negotiations among stakeholders and government that resulted in industry and union-supported worker safety standards for construction cranes; and
- A charter consensus process that helped a failed city reclaim its democracy.
Using these real-world examples, Civic Fusion guides readers through a provocative discussion about what mediators aspire to do, what they actually do, and what needs to be done to bring disparate groups of people together to reach agreements on complicated public policy questions.
Susan L. Podziba has been a public policy mediator for 25 years, and her clients have included the U.S. Departments of Commerce, Defense, Education, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Labor and Transportation, as well as the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Institute for Peace. Podziba is listed on the U.N. Mediation Roster and has taught graduate seminars in mediation and negotiation at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.
Title: Civic Fusion: Mediating Polarized Public Disputes
Publisher: ABA Section of Dispute Resolution
Product Code: 5100022
Orders: 800-285-2221 or http://ambar.org/civicfusion
Editor’s note: Review copies are available by sending an email to Katrina Krause at Katrina.Krause@americanbar.org. If you publish a review of this book, please send tearsheets or a copy for our files to Katrina Krause, American Bar Association, Book Publishing, 321 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60654.
With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.