Vasantha Stesin runs her own boutique law practice and is an experienced Dispute Resolution (DR) practitioner with a 41+ year career in the global legal, pharmaceutical and health sectors as a senior corporate executive with a pharmacy background, a barrister/advocate, then corporate and commercial solicitor.
She has spent significant time developing her expertise in international and local jurisdictions and combines her corporate, business, legal and DR skills to assist in the provision of commercially savvy, solution-based outcomes for clients and parties in dispute. She brings a lifetime of experience to bear when dealing with often complex disputes. Her sensitivity to cultural nuances, strong people and communication skills, legal and commercial training, and ability to get to the crux of issues is greatly valued. This has resulted in many successes in various forums.
Having worked for multinational pharmaceutical companies in senior management roles and then as a legal advisor and litigator, Vasantha is very experienced in broad commercial matters and litigation for pharmaceutical, medical device, start-ups and biotechnology companies as well as hospitals, research institutes and the like (including a specialisation in Intellectual Property and its commercialisation).
Vasantha’s focus has always revolved around people, communication, advancement and resolution, from her early corporate through to her later legal career that eventually led her to dispute resolution.
Having seen the toll that litigation took on her clients, Vasantha decided to focus on what had started to become recognised as a real contender in the world of litigation, DR. Vasantha is a NMAS-accredited Mediator nationally, a trained negotiator, well versed with conflict coaching, an arbitrator who is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (FCIArb), the Australian Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (ACICA) and empanelled with the Asian International Arbitration Centre (AIAC).
She has tied her practice experience to her 12-year teaching role at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, with postgraduate students studying for qualifications to advance within the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotechnology industries. She has also been involved with lecturing and tutoring undergraduate students at Monash University in Melbourne.
As a London-trained barrister, with international litigation experience, in an era where adversarial means, rather than collaborative ones were used, she was instinctively drawn to innovative ways to deal with disputes.
Much of Vasantha’s experience was gained from living, working and studying in many different jurisdictions and it is these multi-cultural, and individual insights that gave her empathy, wisdom, patience and understanding to deal with disputants in novel ways.
Vasantha has conducted private mediations, worked under various statutory regimes, with panels, commissions and the courts, both prior to and during litigation. She also works closely with businesses in conflict coaching including situations of workplace harassment and bullying and organisations that cater to people in crisis, needing support and re-training in how they approach their personal and professional lives.
Apart from arbitration panels, Vasantha is, inter alia, on the mediation panels of the Victorian Small Business Commission, the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court (SLEM), Domestic Building Dispute Resolution Victoria (DBDRV), Department of Justice and Regulation, Victoria, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO), the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), the Arts Law Centre of Australia and formerly with the Civil Mediation Program of the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria and IP Australia.
Vasantha conducts private mediations under various statutory regimes, court mandated mediations and when privately instructed by solicitors or parties/corporations both prior to and during litigation. She undertakes conflict coaching and uses alternative dispute resolution methods in various workplace issues including harassment and bullying.
Vasantha is involved in the specialised field of Elder Mediation and is a mediator member of the Elder Mediation Australasian Network (EMAN). Vasantha contributes to the legal and DR spheres by being actively involved with her industry organisations and uses various forums to promote DR through the running of seminars, workshops and speaking at conferences. She is a mentor to junior practitioners and runs training courses in mediation.