WashULaw’s Negotiation & Dispute Resolution (NDR) program embraces the School of Law’s commitment to prepare graduates to be effective and skilled practitioners, negotiators, and mediators in local, national, and international arenas. NDR alumni also become successful arbitrators, policymakers, ombudspersons, academics, diplomats, business leaders, and more.

NDR Curriculum

WashULaw is one of the few law schools in the country to require an introductory Negotiation course for all first-year JD students and has done so for 14 years. NDR focused-LLM students are also required to take this course, which introduces students to negotiation theory and practice; enhances their understanding of professional identity, judgment, and ethics; and establishes a framework for upper-level NDR courses. Students can select from 20+ upper-level courses to build their understanding of NDR theory and practice.



The Law School regularly offers the courses below, although some are not available every year. For guidance about which courses will best fit your particular needs, please consult Professor Karen Tokarz, Professor Jim Reeves, or Assistant Dean Tomea Mersmann.

  • Advanced Negotiation Theory and Practice
  • Arbitration Theory and Practice
  • Business Lawyering: Listening, Writing and Negotiation
  • Business Negotiation Theory and Practice
  • Comparative Business Negotiation, Theory and Practice
  • Contract Drafting and Negotiation
  • Cross-Cultural Dispute Resolution
  • International Business Transactions
  • IP Litigation and Dispute Resolution
  • Law and Psychology
  • Mediation Theory and Practice
  • Multi-Party and Public Policy Dispute Resolution
  • Pre-Trial Practice and Settlement: Civil
  • Pre-Trial Practice and Settlement: Criminal
  • Securities Law: Litigation and Arbitration
  • Transnational Litigation & Arbitration – New for 2024
  • Trial Practice and Procedure
  • State Level Lobbying (in conjunction with the Brown School)
  • Contract Management and Negotiation Across the Americas
  • International Commercial Arbitration
  • Investor State Arbitration
  • Landlord Tenant Law Practice and Mediation


Clinics and Externships

The School of Law offers the following Clinic and Externship related to NDR for JD Students: the Civil Rights, Community Justice & Mediation Clinic and the International Justice & Conflict Resolution Externship.



Certificate and Joint Degree Programs

The School of Law offers an LLM concentration in Negotiation & Dispute Resolution. This NDR LLM specialization draws both domestic and international students. Recent JD joint-degree grads and NDR-focused LLM grads now hold positions with law firms, courts, agencies, and NDR organizations around the world.

JD students interested in this area of the law can apply for a certificate in Public Interest Law or Business & Corporate Law. They may also pursue a joint JD/NDR LLM degree in six semesters. LLM students enrolled in the LLM for International Lawyers may pursue an LLM with Certificate in Negotiation & Dispute Resolution.




NDR Research and Scholarship

WashULaw is a leading source for NDR research and scholarship. In conjunction with the Washington University Journal of Law and Policy, the NDR program has hosted several “New Directions in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution,” scholarship roundtables to bring to the law school academics and practitioners at the forefront of negotiation and dispute resolution scholarship, teaching, and practice from around the world. WashULaw JD & NDR focused-LLM students are encouraged to attend these roundtables which foster cutting-edge scholarship in the NDR field. The “New Directions” series has generated nine volumes, including the most recent on “New Directions in Dispute Resolution and Clinical Education in Response to COVID,” with a tenth scheduled for publication in fall 2022. NDR research programming also includes the “International Arbitration and Dispute Resolution Symposium,” which draws presenters and attendees from around the world and which has been cosponsored in recent years with the Whitney R. Harris World Law Institute.


Other Opportunities

The School of Law offers students interested in NDR a range of extra-curricular opportunities, such as dispute resolution competitions. JD students may also pursue summer internships with agencies and courts overseas through the Global Public Interest Law Initiative, as well as participate in a variety of NDR-related conferences, lectures, and roundtables.

For well over 15 years, the NDR program has also partnered with U.S. Arbitration and Mediation-St. Louis to offer three NDR-focused CLE programs per year, which are free for WashULaw faculty, staff, and students.

The following full-time faculty teach in the area of Negotiation & Dispute Resolution.

Faculty and Staff Directory
Karen Tokarz Headshot

Karen Tokarz

Charles Nagel Professor of Public Interest Law & Policy; Director, Negotiation & Dispute Resolution Program and Director, Civil Rights & Mediation Clinic

Juan Del Valle Headshot

Juan Del Valle

Director of International Programs & Lecturer in Law, International Programs

MJ Durkee Headshot

MJ Durkee

William Gardiner Hammond Professor of Law

Peter A. Joy Headshot

Peter A. Joy

Henry Hitchcock Professor of Law; Director, Criminal Justice Clinic

Cash Nickerson Headshot

Cash Nickerson

Visiting Professor of Practice

Ann Davis Shields Headshot

Ann Davis Shields

Professor of Practice, Director of Legal Practice and Pretrial Practice & Settlement Programs