Faculty Scholarship Digest

Nancy Hardin Rogers



Nancy H. Rogers, Enhancing Attorney’s Support for Mediation: The Experience in the United States, 2 ADR Com. L.J. 23 (2013).

This article started as a talk Nancy Rogers gave at a UN conference in Istanbul on court mediation in the United States. During its transformation into an article, the focus changed slightly to highlight the role of attorneys’ support for mediation in the US. Rogers was trying to respond to reports that as courts around the world began to offer mediation, the local bars objected. First, Rogers describes the early years of court-connected mediation in the United States to show that we also experienced attorney opposition. Then Rogers describes court mediation today with its explosion of use and widespread acceptance. She then teases out the strategies responsible for the shift: getting attorneys to attend mediations sessions with their clients, publicizing that peers were using mediation, organizing support from in-house counsel, and responding to concerns in the administration of the programs. In the end, Rogers contends that “[s]imply getting them to mediation seems to have been the key lever for change.”

Nancy Rogers, Introduction: The Next Phase for Dispute Resolution in Law Schools: Less Growth, More Change, 25 OHIO ST. J. ON DISP. RES. 1 (2010).

In this introduction to a symposium on the future of dispute resolution in law schools, Nancy notes that the teaching of dispute resoltion in law school’s has reached a plateau as a mainstream course. To those scholars who were there at the beginning—twenty-five years ago when the subject barely had a “toehold”—Nancy explains that its current status could represent both the achievement of a very substantial goal and perhaps a minor disappointment to those who hoped to teach ADR to every law student.

In addition to describing the future seen by each of the contributors to the symposium, Nancy argues that given the number of legal and policy issues in ADR, the articles reveal “the teaching of dispute resolution should include more than skills training” and address those issues. At the same time, Nancy recognizes that law schools may nonetheless “look to dispute resolution teaching primarily to meet goals for skills learning since they offer many courses on law and policy.”


Nancy H. Rogers, Robert C. Bordone, Frank E.A. Sander & Craig A. McEwen, Designing Systems and Processes for Managing Disputes (2013).

Nancy Rogers and her coauthors have created the first textbook for the field of dispute systems design (DSD). Designing Systems explicitly identifies its target audience: “You are the primary target for this book if you are a student with a background in dispute resolution and interested in making design a part of your future work and community involvement.” What sets it aside from a typical law school text is its focus on the process of DSD. It is not just another ADR text. In fact, there is no discussion of the various ADR techniques anywhere in the book. Instead, the authors explore the how and why of dispute systems design. This includes such difficult questions as whether a designer would add value, how to handle designer dilemmas around competing stakeholder interests, how to be selected and accepted as a designer, and what it takes to be an effective intervenor. The emphasis, however, is not on the theoretical, but the practical. Six real world examples of systems-design are used throughout the text to illustrate the process issues. These practical examples themselves reflect the diversity of the field. They explore private, commercial systems with eBay's online dispute resolution process. They highlight the national and international scope of DSD by examining the process by which the South African government and insurgents created a peaceful transition to majority rule. They illustrate domestic, local DSD with Cure Violence’s work with at-risk youth in Chicago to diminish violence. Designing Systems, however, is much more than a just a textbook. It is also the first compilation of DSD resources, as well as the first comprehensive look at the challenges facing the field. As another reviewer put it: “As textbook, bibliography, and road map, Designing Systems hits the trifecta. Whether the reader is a professor or a student, a researcher or a practitioner, Designing Systems has earned its place in the winners’ circle and will be an invaluable resource.” This book warrants these accolades.

Teacher's Manualss

Nancy H. Rogers, Robert C. Bordone, Frank E.A. Sander & Craig A. McEwen, Teacher’s Manual: Designing Systems and Processes for Managing Disputes (2013)

A textbook is often only as useful as its teacher’s manual. On this score, Nancy Rogers and her coauthors create an admirable companion for Designing Systems with this Teacher’s Manual. After a preliminary discussion on overall course design and sample syllabi, the Teacher’s Manual systematically identifies for each chapter the relevant learning goals, teaching ideas, AV resources, question-by-question discussion, and exercise discussion. The Teacher’s Manual is liberally sprinkled with URL links to online resources and examples. There are also helpful reminders (“In case you might be over forty, we remind that, for most students, the types of technology discussed in this chapter are not new.”). Also present are many examples provided by Rogers of how the concepts from Designing Systems played out here at Moritz in her DSD classes, such as the development of the student-run organization, SPEAK. Seeing these references, one is left with a sense of pride that our students have not only benefited from masterful instruction, but their experiences have a life of their own in the instruction of others.