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Just Court ADR

The blog of Resolution Systems Institute

Posts Tagged ‘lessons learned’

RSI Launches State-by-State Guide to Court ADR

Susan M. Yates, December 13th, 2010

The RSI team is excited to announce the launch of Court ADR Across the US, a comprehensive national guide to court alternative dispute resolution, on, RSI’s national court ADR resource center. The searchable guide features court rules, statutes, studies and other resources for all 50 states and Washington, DC, organized in an easy-to-access format.

Important facts about this new service:

1.  It provides a state-by-state view of state and federal court ADR.

2.  It is searchable across states.

3.  It is comprehensive.

Court ADR Across the US is a unique free service, as is the host site It is the only resource dedicated to collecting and making available as much information about court ADR as is available. (more…)

Overcoming Fear of Failure

Jennifer Shack, August 20th, 2010

FAILFaire is a gathering of technology non-profits to share stories of failure and give an award to the worst one. The purpose is to learn from each other’s failures and not replicate them. According to a New York Times article on FAILFaire, non-profits are leery of revealing failures because it may turn off donors and thus harm those they are trying to help. This type of thinking has led many not to examine the reasons behind failures, instead focusing on what has worked rather than what has not. There is a school of thought that says we can learn more from our – and others’– mistakes than we can from our successes.

So, in the interest of improving monitoring and evaluation practices, I’m going to share RSI’s worst failure. RSI was working with an Illinois court to develop a monitoring system for its family mediation program. The system we came up with included case management data that the Clerk’s Office collected, along with data collected by the court through post-mediation reports and questionnaires. In Illinois, the Clerk’s Office is an entirely separate governmental entity from the court system, with an elected Clerk in each county. We thought the best approach, then, would be to create software that would download data from the Clerk’s database into the database for the program. This would eliminate the need to re-enter the Clerk’s data as well as the constant need for the Clerk to send that data to court staff. In essence, the Clerk’s database and our database would be connected, but not integrated. It seemed like a good way to reduce the amount of work that staff would have to do in order to monitor the program. (more…)

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