Styles and Goals: Clarifying the Professional Identity of Divorce Mediation



In contrast to mediation outcome studies, there is a lack of research on mediation processes. In response, this article explores mediators' styles and goals and their determinants, such as the mediators' professional background and client characteristics. Survey data of 359 divorce professionals were analyzed with the use of multiple regression analyses. Results showed that styles and goals are predominantly determined by professional-related characteristics. Lawyer mediators and mental health mediators diverged in advisory and interest-based styles but were unified in all goals we studied. The goals, self-determination, advocacy, and processing emotions differentiated mediation from law and mental health practice. Implications are discussed.