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May 13, 2020

ABA dispute resolution conference goes virtual with diverse programs, events

WASHINGTON, May 13, 2020 — The 2020 Virtual Spring Conference of the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution begins Monday, May 18 for five days, featuring online programs that offer different themes daily and many carrying CLE credits. There will also be an opportunity for virtual networking through the “Connecting with Colleagues” website.

2020 Spring Conference of the
ABA Section of Dispute Resolution

May 18–22 (generally 10 a.m.–6 p.m. ET)


With the COVID-19 pandemic upending business as usual, the theme of this year’s spring conference —Improvise. Innovate. Inspire. — has found new meaning. The conference offers group discussions, social hours, chat boards and networking in addition to programming that includes 16.5 hours of continuing legal education credit.

All programming will be accessible from the Virtual Spring Conference web platform and app, which are available to all registrants.

The theme of each day is:

  • Monday, May 18: Improvise. Innovate. Inspire.
    Programs include “Resolving Disputes Within Different Cultures and Religion,” 2–3:15 p.m.; and “Mediating the Political Divide,” 3:15–4:30 p.m.

  • Tuesday, May 19: Mediation.
    Programs include a welcome message from ABA President Judy Perry Martinez and sessions such as “Overcoming Mediation Cultural & Language Barriers,” 11 a.m.–12:15 p.m.; and “Handling Mediation Unruliness,” 2–3:15 p.m.

  • Wednesday, May 20: Symposium on Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Courts.
    Programs include “How is Online Dispute Resolution Increasing Global Access to Justice,” 11 a.m.–12:15 p.m.; “Addressing Unconscious Bias in the Selection of Neutrals,” 2–3:15 p.m.; and a “Connecting With Colleagues” discussion at 5:30 p.m. featuring the recently published book “Theories of Change for the Dispute Resolution Movement: Actionable Ideas to Revitalize Our Movement,” edited by John Lande. The book will be available to participants as a free download for the discussion.

  • Thursday, May 20: Arbitration.
    Programs include “Arbitration Law Update – Focus on Tech & Innovation,” 11 a.m.–12:15 p.m.; and “Arbitration on the Ballot: The 2020 Election and Beyond,” 1 p.m. (video)

On Friday, May 21, the section will sponsor its annual Legal Educators’ Colloquium.

Media can register for the conference by emailing Bill Choyke at [email protected].

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