The Minnesota State Office of Dispute Resolution was founded in 1985 to promote the use of means other than litigation for resolving disputes affecting the public interest. Now the Minnesota State Office for Collaboration and Dispute Resolution, its mission has expanded to include a broad array of collaborative processes.
OCDR programs have included management of the Minnesota Special Education Mediation Service for the Department of Education, administration of a Department of Human Rights mediation program, a workplace mediation program, and more.
Public policy consensus building projects have included a mercury reduction initiative with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, changes to child custody legislation with the state legislature, I-35 noise walls with the City of Richfield and the Minnesota Department of Transportation, joint school/city activity center design with the Hopkins School District and the City of Minnetonka, and many others.
OCDR has worked with more than 20 state agencies including the Department of Human Services, the Department of Education, and MnSCU; 25 cities including St. Cloud, Woodbury, and Minneapolis; and a number of other public sector entities.
OCDR was established to provide effective forums for collaborative problem solving, public decision-making and community involvement on contentious public issues and to build capacity within public agencies.
Serving as a statewide catalyst to advance:
- Sustainable resolution of matters of public interest
- Broad use of community mediation throughout Minnesota
- Effective collaboration and dispute resolution in state and local government
- Advance and increase the use of collaborative public policy dispute resolution processes in Minnesota by convening processes that address significant public policy matters
- Enhance and strengthen Minnesota's community mediation programs and the direct services they provide to citizens
- Meet the unique and varied dispute resolution needs of Minnesota's state and local government agencies
- Ensure high quality, sustainable operations and programming for the OCDR