The Worshipful Company of Arbitrators announced its first UK Mediation Skills contest in July 2010. The Competition is open to universities and law colleges throughout the UK and is intended to assist in training law students to better understand the skills needed to be effective in negotiation and mediation and to give students the opportunity to exhibit and develop their problem-solving skills. Student teams are divided into requesting and responding parties and adopt the role of counsel and client before an experienced mediator and judges. At the end of each session the teams are given constructive feedback by the judges to help them develop their skills.
Students are encouraged to display and develop the skills necessary to be an effective negotiator and advocate including: planning in advance of the meeting; considering the strengths and weaknesses of their own and their opponents' position; developing a strategy for the negotiations; presentation of their own position; active and effective listening to their opponents; responding positively to what is heard; creative engagement with the negotiation process; adopting a principled approach; generating options to resolve difficulties.
The first contest was held in 2011. The Competition was won by the team from the University of the West of England, Margaret Mathieson and Elizabeth Evans.
The 2012 Competition was won by the team from London Metropolitan University, Leah Angelle Boyer and Ryan O'Donnell. Their coach was William McKay a senior lecturer at the university
The 2013 competition was won by the team from University College London consisting of Chinelo Awa and Adele Cameron. They travelled to Paris to take part in the 8th ICC International Commercial Mediation Competition from 8th to 13th February 2013.Details of the 2014 competitiion can be found here.