Inaugural message from John Bassie, Ciarb President

2023 Ciarb President John Bassie

I am honoured to have been elected Ciarb President for 2023. As my tenure begins, I would like to share with you my thoughts and priorities for the year ahead.

Before doing so, I would like to thank our immediate past President Jane Gunn FCIArb. Over the past year, we have liaised closely with the aim of providing continuity on certain themes through our presidencies. It has been a pleasure to work with you Jane.

Harnessing the Power of ADR

The world, and dispute resolution, continues to adapt and change following the impact of Covid-19. I believe we can harness the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) power that exists in our midst through mediation and hybrid ADR services, such as Med-Arb or Arb-Med, to address the complex and evolving needs of parties.

It is imperative that we join together as dispute resolvers and ensure our fellow citizens have the necessary tools available and clear avenues to access justice in a timely, efficient, cost effective and peaceful manner. It is my sincerest belief that we have an excellent opportunity to take ADR to another level as a result of our immediate past experiences.

Access to quality, timely justice is a global right!

Global Effort and the Way Forward

Ciarb’s strategy has been developed in consultation with members and Branches. It sets out three strategic aims, which are to:

  • Globally promote the constructive resolution of disputes;
  • To become an inclusive global thought leader; and
  • To develop and support an inclusive global community of diverse dispute resolvers.

These aims rest on principles of diversity, inclusion, sustainability, communication and continuity.

This strategy has started us on a journey that will ensure the global growth of the Institute and enable us to retain our position as the number one ADR organisation in the world.

As President, I will support Ciarb in the achievement of its aims and strive to exemplify the underlying principles.

Communication and continuity, in particular, are key to how I intend to fulfil my role. I will endeavour to meet each of Ciarb’s Branch Chairs, encouraging direct and open communication. I will work closely with the Vice President and Deputy Vice President to ensure we are all on the same page and pool our counsel as, together, we create opportunities, navigate challenges and celebrate successes.

Enhanced Access to Justice

Ultimately, we must facilitate access to justice, and this will strengthen the rule of law. If we provide a timely, cost-effective and convenient route to justice, we will see an improvement of life at all levels.

We must embed ADR in our schools; communities; our legal systems; and in our Private sector industries and businesses.

As a result, I promise you we will see improvements in our:

  • Children’s lives – the future of our society;
  • Communities;
  • Judicial systems – with ADR alleviating and assisting with backlogs;
  • Businesses and commerce – the way we trade and the way we want to be dealt with.

We have an obligation to do what is in our grasp to ensure and preserve the right of any global citizen to accessible, fair and affordable justice.

I will use my role to advocate for the practice, profession and protection of ADR.

John S. Bassie JP LLM FCIArb C.Arb
Ciarb President 2023