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Problem solving forms part of our cognitive processes. There are many approaches to problem solving, depending on the nature of the problem and the people involved in the problem. The Problem-solving techniques typically used and involves, are clarifying description of the problem, analysing causes, brainstorming and identifying alternatives, assessing each alternative, choosing one, implementing it, and evaluating whether the problem was solved or not. Problem solving is a key skill for mediators to enable the parties to explore alternatives in resolving their dispute. The mediator will facilitate the process so that parties work collaboratively together in resolving their dispute resulting in a win/win outcome.
Further reading: www.beyondintractability.org http://managementhelp.org/prsn_prd/prob_slv.htm