ADR, the new skyrocket

to solve e-commerce conflict



By Bastien Bonneau

SKEMA Business School

Paris, France



The e-commerce industry is expanding in the world. we are focusing in this paper on the binding contract dispute in the e-commerce industry. We found seven different alternatives methods of settlement among the most used extra-judicial ways of contract issues solving. After a brief description of each one, we have compared them regarding nine criteria specific to the e-commerce. Our analysis allowed us to affirm that the negotiation is the most efficient way to solve a contract dispute even if prevention is the most used by the different companies.

Keywords: E-commerce, Online buying, Dispute, dispute process, Dispute resolution, E-commerce project manager.


The advent of the internet in the 2000s and e-commerce have led to several changes in the consumers’ minds. A shift has been observed in the consumer buying behaviour and a transformation of traditional stores into a virtual place called website. “According to a Wavestone study, in France, 58% of consumers interrogated, buy on the internet each month”[1]

“For e-commerce industry the main project is to sell products and services on the Internet via a platform and through a licence to operate. Even if your business doesn’t have a physical location, an asset that often has an intrinsic effect on the value of your business is its URL. The other assets are the platform, the traffic and all the product present in on the e-commerce platform.

The Programme will deliver assets and benefits that are critical to the sponsoring organization’s day to day operation, the role of the programme manager within the e-commerce company will be to ensure all stakeholders (internal & external) are engaged in the program, He will be responsible for shipping new features, for new product introductions. He will be involved in requirements analysis, functional and technical design discussions, testing, proof-of-concept and working with partners.

The portfolio of projects is no different than any investment portfolio; the objective is to minimize the risk and maximize the return. Any organization, be it Owner or Contractor, has a portfolio of assets (resources) available to dedicate to projects, with the objective being to develop the best “mix” of projects which will generate the most favorable return on those assets. In e-commerce they will create a safe platform, user friendly and simple to create.

The portfolio of assets constituted by the Information Assets are normally controlled by functional groups such as IT or Engineering; in e-commerce it will be all the information concerning the customer, their credit cards and e-mail. Human Assets are controlled by HR, it’s all the employees working for the e-commerce platform and finally the Financial Assets are controlled by accounting or finance that will record all the transactions in the platform.

The legal framework is created by the signature of a binding agreement between the platform, the sellers and the buyers. This agreement includes the Transactional Terms and the General Terms that describe the terms and conditions on which you can conclude online transactions for products and services by using the online transaction site.”[2]

However, conflict may arise between these 3 parts contracts. For the project managers, these problems are the result of misleading on product information, lack of checking, defective products or delivery delay due to an intentional misbehavior or mistake. The role of the project manager is a key liaison between the product, marketing, vendor and buyers. This position enables him to develop solutions to ensure that the internal and external resolution of conflict are the most suitable for the business, benefits customers, sellers and the e-commerce platform.  Logically, with an increase in the number and rapidity of contracts, traditional ways to solve conflict appear inefficient.

To preserve his company, interest the asset manager and the project manager must determine the asset allocation and balancing risk against performance and find the most suitable processes: the alternatives to resolve disputes in e-commerce platforms. They will have to identify several alternatives for dispute resolution in order to facilitate the process, take into account the cost, the flexibility of the procedures, the duration, the empowerment of the verdict and the discretion. It is imperative that the disputes are resolved adequately, to create a legal framework that secure both consumers and companies to do business in the e-commerce marketplace.

Through our paper we will answer these questions:

  • What are the different alternatives to resolve disputes on online purchasing on e-commerce platforms?
  • Which one of these alternatives is the most efficient and adapted to the e-commerce industry?


To read entire paper, click here


Editor’s note: Student papers are authored by graduate or undergraduate students based on coursework at accredited universities or training programs.  This paper was prepared as a deliverable for the course “International Contract Management” facilitated by Dr Paul D. Giammalvo of PT Mitratata Citragraha, Jakarta, Indonesia as an Adjunct Professor under contract to SKEMA Business School for the program Master of Science in Project and Programme Management and Business Development.  http://www.skema.edu/programmes/masters-of-science. For more information on this global program (Lille and Paris in France; Belo Horizonte in Brazil), contact Dr Paul Gardiner, Global Programme Director [email protected].

How to cite this paper: Bonneau, B. (2019). ADR, the new skyrocket to solve e-commerce conflict, PM World Journal, Vol. VIII, Issue II (February).  Available online at https://pmworldjournal.net/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/pmwj79-Feb2019-Bonneau-adr-the-new-skyrocket-to-solve-ecommerce-conflict.pdf


About the Author

Bastien Bonneau

Paris, France



Bastien Bonneau is currently an Msc student in Project and Program Development and Business Development at Skema Business School, Paris. After several experiences in the banking industry as a fixed term employee.  He realized that big companies need to reinvent their way of functioning to face new challenges. These experiences have developed his leadership and communications skills and sparked his interest in management consulting.  He has spent 5 months in New Zealand and 4 months in Taiwan.  He is currently looking for consulting/project management/HR opportunities in Taiwan.

Bastien can be contacted at [email protected]

And on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/22bastienbonneau22/


[1] 1 Echos, L. (n.d.). 58 % des consommateurs achètent sur internet chaque mois. Retrieved from https://business.lesechos.fr/directions-marketing/commercial/e-commerce/0301433984208-58-des-consommateurs-achetent-sur-internet-chaque-mois-319487.php

[2] 2 GUILD OF PROJECT CONTROLS COMPENDIUM and REFERENCE (CaR) | Project Controls – planning, scheduling, cost management and forensic analysis (Planning Planet). (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.planningplanet.com/guild/gpccar/introduction-to-managing-project-controls