Mediation is a way to settle conflicts by inviting an all-party third party to support communication. An all-party third part is different from an impartial third party in the sense, that in the flow of the process all sides will be heard equally. I have been working with the model of mediation according to the five phases developed by Christoph Besemer since 2001. The core approach is that through five steps common interests are identified. The solution to the conflict will be developed by the clients themselves.
Mediation is not psychotherapy, even though many techniques are based on psychological methods and attitudes. Mediation addresses needs and feelings, but unlike psychotherapy, it is interest-focused and not emotion-focused. Whatever the course of events, the mediator will deal with unpleasant feelings and behaviours respectfully. Irrespective of the content, in conflicts it is important that issues can be talked about again and the role of a mediator is to be a temporary facilitator to reach this end.