Harvard Law Professor Robert Mnookin ’68 will receive the 2016 Award for Outstanding Scholarly Work from the American Bar Association Section of Dispute Resolution. The award honors individuals whose scholarship has contributed significantly to the field of dispute resolution. Among the highest honors given by the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution, the award will be presented to Mnookin during the Section’s Spring Conference in New York City on April 9, 2016.
The award cites Mnookin—who is chair of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School and the director of the Harvard Negotiation Research Project—as one of the leading figures in the field of dispute resolution, particularly for his use of interdisciplinary insights to a broad range of public and private problems. The citation calls Mnookin’s scholarship clear, succinct, and precise and helpful for scholars and practitioners alike, while also being “highly readable and often even fun.”
Mnookin has written or edited ten books and numerous scholarly articles. In his most recent book, “Bargaining with the Devil: When to Negotiate, When to Fight,” he explores the challenge of making such critical decisions. Using eight conflicts drawn from history and his own professional experience, he offers a framework that applies equally to international conflicts and everyday life.
“Professor Mnookin’s scholarly contribution to negotiation and dispute resolution can’t be understated,” said his colleague Robert C. Bordone ’97, clinical professor of law and director of the Harvard Negotiation & Mediation Clinical Program. According to Bordone, Mnookin has “dedicated his life to work that helps individuals, families, and states find better ways to handle and resolve conflict.” Bordone noted that Mnookin’s “enormous creativity and his commitment to interdisciplinary work are a model for all of us who care about helping individuals, families, companies, institutions, and states resolve conflict at lower cost and with greater mutual satisfaction.”
David A. Hoffman ‘84, former chair of the ABA Section of Dispute Resolution, called Mnookin’s scholarship “extraordinary.” According to Hoffman, a lecturer on law at HLS, “Anyone who has used the phrase ‘bargaining in the shadow of the law,’ explored the behind-the-table tensions between lawyer and client, or examined strategic barriers to conflict resolution—just to mention a few of his many contributions—has benefitted from Bob Mnookin’s incisive mind and exceptionally important research and writing.”