This case study compares mediators’ images concerning their practice with actual behaviors while mediating. Five experienced mediators participated in the study. They were interviewed and observed in real mediation sessions. The findings suggest that mediators tend to “walk the talk” as far as their basic assumptions about mediation’s goals are concerned. However, they do so less often when it comes to some mediation principles and tactics. The gap between espoused theories and practice may be related to the mediators’ experience and the organizational context.
Conflict mediation in Israel is a relatively new field, being less than 20 years old, in comparison to the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. As such it is still in the process of crystallization, searching for appropriate conceptual frameworks and modes of implementation in a multi-cultural society.