The Books

A Mediator’s Musings:

on Mediation, Negotiation, Politics and a Changing World


A collection of articles and Blog posts written in recent years by leading mediator, John Sturrock KC, containing reflections on mediation, negotiation, politics and other topics.

As John explains in the Introduction, all proceeds from this book will go to cancer research.

View a recording of the book launch, in the form of an interview with John on Zoom, here.

Buy it in Paperback and eBook formats on and on

A Mediator’s Musings:

on Mediation, Negotiation, Politics and a Changing World

Volume 2


A further collection of articles and Blog posts written in recent years by leading mediator, John Sturrock KC, containing reflections on mediation practice and policy, politics, the climate emergency, the war in Ukraine and peace-making.

All proceeds from Volume 2 will go to aid research into strokes.


Buy it in Paperback and eBook formats on and on




International Mediator and Author, Ken Cloke says:

“John Sturrock’s outstanding new book, ‘A Mediators Musings,’ is much more powerful than its’ humble title suggests. It is by turns profound and poignant, insightful and useful, current and lasting. Its’ journalistic origins make it easy reading, but Sturrock’s broad ranging experience and active curiosity make it stimulating and provocative, in the best sense of that word, inviting us to notice what we do and how we speak and act when we are in conflict — and prompting us to have the courage, as Sturrock demonstrates, to learn to do better. Nowhere is this more true or more needed than in political conflicts, where Sturrock has sought to play a role in introducing a kinder, more collaborative approach than the one we have seen and experienced. Buy it, read it, practice it – you won’t be disappointed.”


Founder of the International Mediation Institute and former senior corporate counsel, Michael Leathes says:

“This little collection of some 30 two or three page opinion pieces is focused on human behaviour when trying to resolve conflicts and overcome problems. Using short anecdotes and often quoting from other inspiring thinkers, the author eloquently suggests many ways in which conflicts, tension and difficulties can more successfully be approached and addressed. There are some novel yet simple ideas; for example, ways to take a transformative approach to intractable issues, and a Universal Declaration of Interdependence. He calls for more empathy, courage, imagination, openness, listening and collaboration in problem solving. Beautifully written. Highly dippable. Full of new ideas. Really thought provocative.”


Dr Scilla Elworthy, three times nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize, author and founder of the Business Plan for Peace, says:

“John Sturrock is one of the most experienced mediators to be found anywhere.  He has been effective in resolving hundreds of disputes all over the world, and is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Academy of Mediators.  Not only does he work with parliamentary bodies in the UK, but he also works at local level, promoting respectful dialogues about challenging issues.  The flavour of his negotiation skills and profound training in conflict management becomes immediately evident in the accounts and articles in this valuable book.”

Jayne Maclennan, mediator, says:

Excellent compilation…Every one has triggered thoughts and insights which have been profound. I will keep this on my desk to turn to when I need a compass to get back on track.”

Hugh Elder, mediator, says:

Not just for mediators but for anyone interested in the way in which we communicate with each other in difficult situations, discuss current affairs and reach solutions.”



A Mediator’s Musings: on Mediation, Negotiation, Politics and a Changing World (A Mediator’s Musings Book 1)



It Takes Just One Moment for Things to Change, for Good or Bad

Mediation and Cups of Tea

Kindness and Courage

What’s the Point?

Neil Armstrong Called it on Information Overload

Belief in Excellence Will Take You Far

How Well Do We Perform in Making Scotland a Better Place?

The Abuse of Power Must Be Understood, Not Just Condemned

Paddling Against the Current: Embodied Conflict


A Negotiation Emergency?

Process and Empathy

Knowing How to Negotiate Is an Essential Life Skill


If it Looks Like Mediation?And Other Ramblings…

It’s Not Just About the Moneyand Other Food for Thought for Mediators

Never Give Up: Perseverance In Mediation – And Life?

Optimising the Use of Joint Sessions in Mediation

Mediation: What Makes the Difference?

Mediating Minimally

Mediator “Fairness”?

Moving to Mediation Makes for Earlier Resolution

Mediation: A Cricketing Metaphor

Mediation’s a Bit Like Riding an Electric Bike

Still Set on Making Mediation Mainstream

The Edinburgh Declaration of International Mediators


Mediator Engagement in Politics – and in Other Things We Care About

A Universal Declaration of Interdependence is Needed

The Certainties of the Past Will No Longer Afford Security in the Future

Civility in Politics Should Not Be Too Much to Hope For

Post Election Reflections

Mediation in a Changing Climate? -From Consensus to Confrontation?

A Changing World

Love over Fear – and Holding on to Hope

World leaders must set aside rivalry to fight this scourge

Communication more important than ever


A Mediator’s Musings: on Mediation, Negotiation, Politics and a Changing World (Volume 2)


General Reflections – and Mediation

Reflecting on Purpose

Holding On or Letting Go?

Navigating our Collective Journey: Where are We on the Boat?

Falling Upward in the Pandemic

Some Questions at the Turn of the Year

Reflecting on the Cardinal Virtues and the Liberal Arts

Argument, Dialogue, Compassion – and Mediation


Politics and Policy – and Mediation

Recognising Trauma: Litigation and Politics are Harming Us

We and our Politics Must Learn to Deal with Shades of Grey

Westminster Needs to Brush Up on the Art of Negotiation

Ditch the Fear Factor in our Healthcare System and Get to Grips with Compassion

Scottish Independence ‘Debate’ Requires Empathy and Imagination if it is not to Descend into Verbal Combat

This May be the Moment for Mediation in Difficult Political and Judicial Decisions

Mediating Inter-Governmental Relations in the UK


Mediation Practice – and Policy

I’ll See You on the Dark Side of the Moon: Reflecting on Rapport, Trauma and Resonance in Mediation

Mediations, using Zoom – a Revelation?

Abraham Lincoln Sought Compromise. So Should We.

The Costs of Litigating

Time to Regain Momentum on the Benefits of Mediation

Legal Action can be Costly, but there are Alternatives

Mediation and Juicing – Parallel Worlds?

Changing the Frame: Some Challenging Issues for Promoting Mediation

Reflections on Mediation in Practice and Bringing Parties Together

Tiny Margins Make All the Difference


The Climate Emergency – and Mediation

The World Mediators Alliance on Climate Change?

The Mediators’ Green Pledge

Mediators’ Green Pledge will form Foundation of Sector’s Response to Climate Change

A Net Zero Civil Justice System?

Excerpt from a Keynote Address at the London International Disputes Week

Reflections on the Mediators’ Green Pledge: Where Are We Now?


The War in Ukraine – and Peace-Making

Warm, Respectful Talks May Thaw the Threat of the Kremlin

The Situation in Ukraine – What Role for Mediation?

Difficult Tasks Ahead for Peacemakers

Ruling out Peace Talks with Russia could be a Mistake

Dear President Putin…a Thought Experiment

Knowing our Neighbours – a Mediator’s Reflection

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