Mitchell Hamline Law School: Environmental Conflict Management & Dispute Resolution Class

5 - 8 June 2017, 4:30pm - 9:15pm
10 June 2017, 9:00am - 5:00pm

Jon Berkin of ERM is co-presenting a course on Environmental Conflict Management & Dispute Resolution offered by the Mitchell Hamline School of Law Dispute Resolution Institute in Saint Paul, MN.

The impacts on the environment by infrastructure and other development projects have attracted an increasing amount of attention and also generating a lot of controversy.
This controversy has resulted in conflicts over land use issues among citizens, industry, and natural resource managers at local, state, and federal agencies, and tribes.
Do you know how to effectively engage in dialogue to minimize these conflicts? Do you understand why conflicts are escalating? Do you possess the latest skills to engage your stakeholders and influence specific outcomes?

This course is designed for anyone who seeks to facilitate dialogue, collaboration, and negotiation to solve environmental conflicts. The course will use a combination of readings on paradigms for managing environmental conflict, real-world case studies presented by guest speakers, and role plays to encourage interactive class discussion and build conflict resolution skills.

The course will discuss the values, practices and systems which drive these complicated issues across sectors and participants will gain an understanding of the causes, impacts and dynamics of environmental conflict and the range of tools to address them. Participants also will learn to assess conflict situations, employ methods to settle disputes in non-adversarial ways, and achieve collaboration in decision making.

Course topics include:

  • What is negotiable?;
  • Working in regulatory frameworks and compliance structures; 
  • Traditional conflict resolution modes for environmental issues; 
  • Understanding interests and the dynamics of values conflicts; 
  • Challenges in EDR: bias, systemic barriers, history & mistrust;
  • Cultural perspectives on what the environment represents; and 
  • Environmental negotiation, problem solving and decision making.

Learn more about this course

Mitchell Hamline’s Dispute Resolution Institute is ranked in the top 5 dispute resolution programs in the nation by U.S. News & World Report for the 16th consecutive year.

ERM's Role

Jon Berkin, a Partner in ERM’s Minneapolis office, will be co-teaching the course.

Jon Berkin, Ph.D. is a Partner in the Minneapolis office of ERM. He specializes in managing the routing, siting and permitting of large scale energy infrastructure projects and the design and implementation of public outreach processes. Jon has over 20 years of environmental permitting experience in the energy industry. He has worked on energy projects throughout the lower 48 states and in Alaska. He is a frequent presenter on regulatory compliance and dispute resolution topics at energy industry conferences and workshops. Jon also holds s a Certificate in Dispute Resolution from Hamline University School of Law.

ERM provides leading-edge environmental planning, permitting, regulatory compliance, public affairs, and training services for the energy industry. ERM is committed to helping our energy clients effectively address the full spectrum of strategic and operational challenges - maximizing efficiency while mitigating environmental, operational, and social risks.


Mitchell Hamline School of Law
Saint Paul, MN

Register for the course

This course is open to general registration. To learn more, please follow the link below to the Mitchell Hamline School of Law website.