Mediators orientations: an analysis of mediation in Quito

AutorXimena Bustamante - María Bernarda Carpio Frixone - Isabela Moreno Burns - María Gracia Naranjo Ponce
CargoPACTUM Dispute Resolution Consulting - Pérez Bustamante & Ponce - LEXVALOR Abogados - Universidad San Francisco de Quito
Mediators orientations: An analysis of mediation in Quito1
La orientación de mediadores: un analysis de la mediación en Quito
X B
PACTUM Dispute Resolution Consulting
M B C F
Pérez Bustamante & Ponce
I M B
M G N P
Universidad San Francisco de Quito
is paper exposes the characteristics of the facilitative and evaluative mediation styles; and the
vision that the mediator can adopt on the problem submitted to mediation: broad and narrow.
us, it examines the four possible orientations that the mediator can follow: facilitative with
a narrow vision of the problem; facilitative with a broad vision of the problem; evaluative with
a narrow vision of the problem; and evaluative with a broad vision of the problem. Later, this
research identies the style of mediation and the denition of the problem with greater use in
the city of Quito, as well as the ones preferred by the lawyers who attend mediations. To this
end, surveys were carried out to both mediators and lawyers from the city of Quito in order to
determine the style and vision of the problem to which they are oriented and to identify the
current situation of mediation in Quito.
Mediation styles / Problem Denition / Broad Problem Denition / Narrow Problem Denition /
Evaluative Style / Facilitative Style.
El presente trabajo expone las características de los estilos de mediación facilitativo y evaluativo;
y de la visión que el mediador puede adoptar sobre el problema sometido a mediación:
amplia y estrecha. Por lo tanto, examina las cuatro posibles orientaciones que puede tomar el
mediador: facilitativo con una visión estrecha del problema; facilitativo con una visión amplia
del problema; evaluativo con una visión estrecha del problema; y evaluativo con una visión
amplia del problema. Posteriormente, se identica el estilo de mediación y cuál es el problema
más suscitado en la ciudad de Quito, así como aquellos preferidos por los abogados que asisten
a mediaciones. Para ello, se realizaron encuestas tanto a mediadores como a abogados de Quito
a n de determinar el estilo y la denición del problema por la cual ellos se orientan e identicar
la situación actual de la mediación en Quito.
1 The authors thank the San Francisco de Quito University Law School, because in the framework of its academic programs
it promoted the development of this research. The Spanish version of this article was originally published in the Ecuadorian
Journal of Arbitration (Revista Ecuatoriana de Arbitraje), No. 8.
Ximena Bustamante, María Bernarda Carpio Frixone, Isabela Moreno Burns Y María Gracia Naranjo
Ponce (2017). Mediators Orientations: an Analysis of Mediation in Quito Iuris Dictio 20, 209-239.
ISSN 1390-6402 / e-ISSN 2528-7834.
Iuris Dictio 20 (2017), 209-239. ISSN 1390-6402 / e-ISSN 2528-7834. DOI:
Palabras clave
Estilos de mediación / Denición del problema / Denición amplia del problema / Denición
estrecha del problema / Estilo evaluativo / Estilo facilitativo.
1. An approach to mediation
Alternative dispute resolution methods are those that resolve controversies without the need to
go to court. Typical methods include: neutral assessment, negotiation, conciliation, mediation
and arbitration (Legal Information Institute, 2007). ese are based on mutual understanding
and cooperation principles, in order to settle a conict in a peaceful way (Gonzalo, 2011, p. 32).
e term “mediation” can have dierent meanings depending on the context in which
it is used or depending on whether its emphasis relies on the procedure or on the outcome (Mc-
Guinness, 2010, p.19). However, in an eort to shape what mediation concentrates, it has been
dened as “[...] a non-adversarial procedure, where a neutral third party—the mediator—con-
ducts a negotiation process, assisting the parties to arrive to an agreement”2 (Gozaíni, 2001,
p.99). Mediation is seen as an informal alternative process to litigation, where professionals in
negotiation help the parties jointly reach an agreement (Legal Information Institute, 2007).
Mediation has as its essential characteristic the willingness and consent of the parties
to participate in it. In addition, mediators act as neutral third parties who construct a frame-
work of cooperation between the parties, so that they can reach their own agreement (Gozaíni,
2001, p. 99). “Mediation seeks to incorporate the so-called co-existential justice, where the
acting body ‘accompanies’ the parties on their conict, guiding them with their advice in the
rational search for answers that overcome the crisis” (Gozaíni, 2009). Likewise, mediation is
conceived as a condential space, giving the parties the opportunity to speak freely and make
proposals for resolution in condence that this will not aect any subsequent judicial process.
What mediation nally seeks is that the parties reach an agreement (2009, p.100),
whether it is appropriate to the normative solution, or not necessarily, as it is explained later on
this article.
[M]ediation starts from a dierent principle. It is not a matter of reconciling opposite inter-
ests that look at the same situation (contractual or de facto); but to nd a peaceful response, a
exible alternative that does not have the precise framework of the analyzed perspective, being
able to obtain absolutely dierent results from the typical picture that qualies the pretension
and its resistance (Gozaíni, 1995, p.15).
2. Recognition of mediation in the Ecuadorian regulatory framework
Mediation has been recognized in the Ecuadorian legal framework since the enactment of the
Law of Arbitration and Mediation. is specialized law abolished the Commercial Arbitration
Act (which was promulgated on October 28, 1963). us, it went from a law that only regulat-
ed arbitration to one that regulates both mechanisms (Poveda, 2006, p. 10).
e 1998 Constitution followed the trend of recognition of mediation in the country.
erefore, in its article 91, it was prescribed that “[i]t will recognize arbitration, mediation and
other alternative procedures for the resolution of conicts, subject to the law”. Likewise, the
current Constitution (2008) rearmed this recognition by expressing in its article 190 that
“[i]t acknowledges arbitration, mediation and other alternative procedures for the resolution
of conicts”.
2 All the quotes originally in Spanish have been translated by the authors.

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