Prioritizing Practice in Ombudsman and ADR Programs



This article examines ways in which the Office of the Ombudsman/Center for Cooperative Resolution (OO/CCR) at the National Institutes of Health pursues activities that comprise an orientation toward practice and supports development of an “activist” ombudsman orientation. The article opens by describing challenges that alternative dispute resolution (ADR) organizations face, contrasts them with the experience of OO/CCR, details elements of a practice orientation as experienced at OO/CCR, and suggests ways in which ADR and ombudsman organizations may address their own challenges and pursue a practice orientation.