Quadra - Alternative Dispute Resolution

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Quadra operates since 2003 as a private provider of ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) services for management of conflicts and commercial and civil disputes

Quadra administers mediation, arbitration and expertise procedures,
promotes diffusion of ADR principles and realises world-class training

what is ADR?

what is ADR?

The acronym "ADR" traditionally stands for "alternative dispute resolution" and marks a heterogeneous category of techniques and proceedings that have the advantage of permitting a quick and efficacious resolution of disputes or conflicts.

The feature "alternative" stresses the difference of such techniques and proceedings in respect to those traditionally used turning to the "ordinary justice".

ADR procedures, like those in front of a court, are expression of the so called conflict "triangularisation" whereas parties in a dispute address themselves to a third neutral in order to have support. Unlike a court, however, said neutrals are private, and so are the proceedings; this allow great flexibility and adaptability.

Basically, ADR systems conform to two models:
the "adjudicative" model, where neutrals are expected to give the parties their evaluation of the case either binding (as in the arbitration), or non-binding (as in the expertise intended to clarify uncertain de facto or de jure situation);
the "negotiation" model, where neutrals catalyses the negotiation potentials and easy communication between the parties (like in facilitative mediation and the various forms of simulated litigation).

ADR techniques are increasingly appreciated for the advantages that imply, both for the parties involved in terms of time and cost savings, and for public systems in terms of reduction of judicial backlog.


Arbitration is a mechanism intended to give the parties in dispute a final decision. Functionally, it is comparable to litigation and a possible alternative to that, but for certain disputes, which are considered as exceeding parties' autonomy; however, it is generally far more flexible, simpler, quicker. Moreover, it allows parties to make recourse to neutrals who are familiar with the matter dispute, and respect neutrality which an utmost appreciated factor in cross-border disputes. Although rendered by a private. arbitrator's award is generally treated like a judicial decision, it is final and in the international arena is granted even broader circulation.

Special Arbitrations
Thanks to its flexible nature, standard arbitration may be adapted to specific parties' needs. In the so called hi-lo arbitration, for instance, the award is binding only if rendered within a given range of possibilities, either disclosed or not by the parties to arbitrator; in Baseball arbitration arbitrator's decision is even more restricted, to a choice between the parties final positions. Arbitrators in Documents-based arbitration take their decision based on parties written submissions only; fast-track arbitration, finally, is an especially speedy procedure.

Mini-trial (executive appraisal)
Mini-trial is a simulated trial, where a case is discussed in front of a "court" where sit top executives of the parties themselves, together with an expert in legal matters (usually a retired judge). The idea is to give the parties a realistic forecast of where a real action in court may lead, so to enable them to negotiate an alternative viable solution.

The expertise process allows parties in dispute to have some uncertain situation clarified by an expert. This may be utilised either as a basis for fruitful negotiations that make advantage of previously unascertained facts (as in the Early Neutral Evaluation) or as a variously binding clarification (e.g. decisions by adjudicators or by a Dispute Review Board in the construction disputes, are final unless challenged within a given time).

what is ADR?

The facilitator is a neutral utilised by parties in disputes in order to easy their negotiations, by so avoiding the recurrent difficulties which cause deadlocks in communication process.

Mediation is a process in which one or more neutrals intervenes in the conflict with no adjucative power. Modalities of intervention vary according to the approach adopted by the mediator. Quadra mediators are incouraged to adopt the so called transformative approach, with the aim to enable the parties to identify the own best way to deal with the conflict (so called "empowerment") and to understand the other party'' reasons, so to "transform" the way the conflict was originally perceived. This enhances the parties' awareness of the situation (so to be in a better position to take consequent decisions), and also improves the quality of parties' interaction.

Hybrid and Multi-tier ADR
Sometimes, ADR is arranged in a hybrid form. In med-arb procedure, by instance, the process consists in a mediation followed by arbitration in case no agreement is reached (the mediator may, or may not serve as arbitrator). Multi-tier contractual clause may provide for different ADR mechanisms put together in sequence (e.g. facilitation, and then mediation, and then arbitration).