Criminal Mediation In Singapore – Tailoring The Process To The Parties

Mr Weng Kuan Eugene Teo1

1State Courts, Singapore, Singapore, Singapore

This paper seeks to shed some light on a mediation process in Singapore which has not received much review: i.e. Criminal Mediations. The paper traces its history, development, rationale, and the legal framework which has since been built around it. The paper then examines the nature of Mediation and the rather unique advantages which it offers in the context of a criminal case. It also examines some of its limitations before suggesting a particular mapping of case types to the mediation techniques and tools to be adopted. This mapping of the cases appears to also have been implicitly acknowledged as well in other jurisdictions.


Eugene Teo Weng Kuan is a District Judge in the Criminal Justice Division of the State Courts of Singapore. He was appointed to this position in 2002. Prior to this, he was working as a Deputy Public Prosecutor at the Attorney-General’s Chambers. He currently presides as a trial judge over a broad range of criminal offence types. He also has duties as a Procedural Judge in overseeing the timely disposition of pending criminal cases.

Emotional Responses in Medical Negligence: Failing to Provide Emotional Closure?

Tina Popa1, Kathy Douglas2

1 PhD Candidate, Graduate School of Business and Law, RMIT University. 

2 Associate Professor, Graduate School of Business and Law, RMIT University

Exploration of emotion is identified in the mediation literature as the opportunity to explore underlying interests and concerns of parties through a discourse that allows for expression of emotions such as anger. The expression of emotion may contribute to the successful settlement of a dispute. Similarly, the therapeutic jurisprudence movement values the expression of emotion for court users.  Therapeutic jurisprudence is a philosophy that interrogates the actions of legal actors to consider the impact of their decisions on the emotional life and psychological wellbeing of those affected by our justice system.

One area where expression of emotion may be valuable to court users is medical negligence cases. Litigating in medical negligence can be stressful and nearly all cases are sent to mediation as part of case management. This article explores the role of emotion in mediation in the context of medical negligence cases. This paper draws on data from a doctoral thesis where 24 senior tort lawyers were interviewed about key challenges in medical negligence litigation and mediation. The analysis of the data shows that consideration of emotion is an important part of medical negligence mediation. Lawyers endorsed the value of mediation as a relatively quick, more informal opportunity to settle a dispute. Unexpectedly, they saw emotion not as arising out of the discussion in the mediation. Rather, the participants saw mediation was beneficial to their client because it provided the opportunity to avoid the emotional cost of pursuing a negligence claim.  Arguably, lawyers in this study did not capitalise on the opportunity that mediation presents to express emotion in a way that assists parties to obtain emotional closure.


Tina Popa is a PhD candidate and sessional lecturer at RMIT University. Tina teaches the Law of Torts in the Juris Doctor program at RMIT. Her doctoral thesis is exploring the challenges in litigation and mediation of medical negligence disputes.

Associate Professor Kathy Douglas is a lecturer and mediator. She researches and publishes extensively on alternative dispute resolution.

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