Mediation & Administration

Conflicts in the public sector may not only hamstring administrative activities, but also jeopardize the willingness of private investors to invest. 

Conflicts arise regularly, especially in the planning and realization of large projects. The competing positions and interests of project sponsors, authorities, residents, citizens' initiatives, and environmental associations stand in tension with each other. It often occurs that the planning and approval procedure as it is foreseen in the relevant sectoral laws cannot solve the conflict – which, in practice, is sometimes expressed emotionally– to the parties' satisfaction. As a consequence, this can lead to planning and approval procedures lasting for many years and being followed by court proceedings, the duration and outcome of which are often unsatisfactory, both for the investors and for the parties concerned. 

Mediation at an early stage, beyond the inflexible statutory participation and consultation procedures, offers the chance to implement "sensitive" projects within a foreseeable period of time, taking into consideration the diverse interests involved, in particular emissions and environmental aspects, (see, for example, Art. 4 b Federal Building Code (BauGB) and Art. 25 sect. 3 German Administrative Procedures Act (VwVFG)).

However, it is not only when the establishment of industrial plants or the implementation of large-scale infrastructure projects is concerned that early mediation can be appropriate. Mediation is also worth considering in disputes under building law concerning the respective interests of neighbors, or in the context of municipal provisions. The same goes for conflicts in civil services, for example in cases of promotion, transfer, or relocation of personnel.