Lisle Baker

The Advocates: a retrospective on an important— and still relevant—innovation in public affairs television (owner)

Before Roger Fisher founded the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, he was nationally recognized for having created an award-winning public affairs television show, The Advocates, which aired on the Public Broadcasting System. Over the course of its five year season, beginning in 1969 (plus additional shows in 1978-79 and in 1984), The Advocates previewed some of the ideas that appeared in Roger’s many writings and, eventually,...

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R. Lisle Baker is a professor of law at Suffolk University Law School in Boston, where he teaches courses on property, mediation, and planning for law as a career and enterprise. While he was an associate in the Boston firm of Hill & Barlow, he was selected as one of the two regular Boston advocates to appear during 1969-70 in the first season of Professor Roger Fisher’s Peabody Award-winning television show, The Advocates. In addition to writing on issues related to psychology and dispute resolution for both the Harvard Negotiation Law Review and The Negotiation Journal, he has written elsewhere on such topics as settling appeals of land use decisions within the framework of the open meeting law, conflicts between beneficial but neighboring uses of land, using betterment assessments to help pay for open space, ethical limits on attorney contact with local zoning officials, and taxing gains from land speculation. He is an honors graduate of Williams College and Harvard Law School. He has also served for almost thirty years as an elected alderman in Newton, Massachusetts, and won an award for his cable TV series of interviews about Newton government, available at