We began Tuesday with a short review of the previous day’s activities, followed by a group activity. As the class was focused on Transnational Mediation (not just mediation, in general), the group activity emphasized the extent to which cultural differences exist, even just within two english-speaking countries (Scotland and the U.S.). For this activity we broke into small groups of students from more than one culture, and our task was to list cultural aspects that are associated with those cultures under topics such as government, popular culture, music, etc.
These lists were placed on the wall, and a discussion commenced that was focused on how differences influence our perspectives and how we need to be aware of this when mediating, so as not to form a bias toward one party or the other. This took most of the morning.
After coming back from lunch, we broke into small groups of four people to work on and practice our own mediating, aided by either Charlie, Brian, or Prof. MacLachlan if any difficulties arose or if anyone got stuck or needed guidance.
When there was about an hour left for the day, we reconvened in the large classroom to discuss how people felt about the day’s activities. We discussed things such as challenges that arose during the small group sessions and things that people thought were helpful in mediating. Charlie wrapped up the day with a short preview of the next day’s activities.
Mid-afternoon Tuesday, we had a trip arranged by Mike to visit Roslyn Chapel, which was made famous by the DaVinci Code movie (maybe the book too, I didn’t read it). It was much smaller than I expected, though its size did not detract from the grandeur of some of the architecture, especially what was inside – the arches and three pillars.