Employment Disputes and Industrial Relations: The Role of Alternative Dispute Resolution

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Department of Jurisprudence and International Law, Faculty of Law, University of Ilorin


Disputes are stubborn fact of organizational life. Although disputes are familiar part of our experience in organizations, their value and centrality to organizational theory and functioning has waxed and waned as a result of changing winds of managerial ideology and theory. Rather than stress the inevitability and desirability of disputes, emphasis is on the harmony and cooperation in the workplace as desired and as an evitable ends. organizational disputes are not always confrontations that achieved high visibility and publicity, such as strikes, walkouts, or firing, but usually bracketed into events and sequences where parties formally negotiate in resolution of their multiple faces of disputes in the organization. The dramatic growth in the use of alternative dispute resolution over the years in solving industrial disputes is quite a revolution, though there were in use too other techniques like mediation, reconciliation, and arbitration, but were largely confined to unionized segment of the workforce. The landscape of employment dispute resolution has been transformed by the development of alternative dispute resolution. This paper is a review of comprehensive survey of the growing role of alternative dispute resolution in employment disputes and industrial relation. It examines the use of alternative dispute resolution as a means of settling disputes in individual workplace, the methods of conciliation, mediation, and arbitration, the trends in alternative dispute resolution, and concludes with an advocacy of alternative dispute resolution as a more positive, speedy and cost effective alternative to court proceedings.




Disputes, Employment, Resolution, Alternative, Mediation, Conciliation, Arbitration