New International Negotiation Simulations: Teaching International Negotiation with Current Global Dynamics

By — on / Teaching Negotiation

international negotiation

With the spread of a global pandemic, climate crisis, and the war on terror, resolving international conflicts has become increasingly complex. Training to address these difficult global conflicts must also reflect the modern issues and dynamics that face the international community. The Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) has several new international negotiation simulations that reflect some of the current issues facing the world today.

Camp Lemonnier – New International Negotiation Simulation

This two party, three hour, non-scoreable negotiation is between the U.S. Defense Attaché and the Djiboutian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs over the potential lease renewal for a key strategic military base: Camp Lemonnier. Camp Lemonnier is a United States Naval Expeditionary Base located in Djibouti and is the only permanent U.S. military base in Africa. Djibouti, bordering Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, has been home to Camp Lemonnier since the September 11, 2001 attacks prompted the United States to seek a temporary staging ground for U.S. Marines in the region. Since then, Camp Lemonnier has expanded to nearly 500 acres and is a base of unparalleled importance.

Major lessons of this simulation include:

  • The importance of understanding the BATNA of all parties in a negotiation.
  • The impact of culture in negotiation.
  • Process management and agenda setting.
  • Principal-agent dynamics.
  • Uncovering sources of power in negotiation.

Preview a Camp Lemonnier Teacher’s Package to learn more about this simulation.

Euro-Idol – New International Negotiation Simulation 

This four-party, two-round international business negotiation is over the selection of the host country and city for the upcoming Euro-Idol music competition.

Euro-Idol is the longest-running international singing competition featuring contestants from European and other invited countries. Every year, each participating country independently conducts a national song competition to choose its country’s “Idol” to represent it at Euro-Idol. Hosting the Euro-Idol competition is one of the most prestigious and sought-after events a country and city can bid for, often compared to hosting the Olympics or the World Cup. Euro-Idol has the potential to bring economic benefit and prestige to cities that are granted this privilege. Typically, the winning country of the previous year’s competition has priority in conversations about hosting, if they choose to be considered. But this pattern was disrupted after the 2020 competition was cancelled, due to coronavirus. Now, countries are free to directly apply to host Euro-Idol’s competition. After a country is chosen by the Euro-Idol Corporation, it is up to the country to choose the city. The Kingdom of Denion is entering the negotiations with the Euro-Idol Corporation in an attempt to secure hosting the upcoming competition.

This negotiation takes place in two rounds. The first round is between the Euro-Idol Corporation and the prospective host country of Denion. If the Euro-Idol Corporation and Denion can come to an agreement, the second round of negotiations takes place between the cities of Bardane and Eindborg, as well as the Denion Office of Special Events, to determine which city will host the competition. Major lessons of this simulation include:

  • Acquire competencies in negotiation preparation, defining BATNA, process, management and agenda setting, uncovering interests, sequencing and packaging issues, and uncovering sources of power in negotiation.
  • Acquire skills in negotiating based on changing information and/or information decided by others.
  • Understand sequencing issues between rounds and how to build momentum for a deal.
  • Negotiate effectively in a process set up to incentivize winner take all (a bidding process).
  • Manage waxing and waning relevance.

To learn more about this simulation, download a free preview copy of the Euro-Idol Teacher’s Package.

Managing the Micronium Mess – New International Negotiation Simulation

This seven-party, eight role, mediated negotiation provides students with the opportunity to negotiate a multi-party agreement regarding a fictitious, potentially harmful substance called “Micronium.” Micronium-based products are an indispensable input into half a dozen important industries, ranging from food production, to medical technologies, to public transportation and cars, and even to housing insulation. However, it is only now becoming clear that careless disposal of Micronium has contaminated soil, freshwater, and ocean resources around the world. National scientific bodies in many countries have formally requested that their government take steps to manage the risks associated with Micronium. However, no country wants to go first. Moreover, the implied trade restrictions would have to be adjudicated through the World Trade Organization’s very slow review procedures, while the danger is already at a crisis level. There are no obvious Micronium substitutes and it is not clear whether effective risk management requires that production be completely halted — which would pose new risks in the medical field and might trigger a world-wide food crisis; or, whether Micronium production and applications should be allowed to continue, but with stringent global restrictions on how it is produced, distributed, used by industry and disposed.

The UN Secretary-General has appointed an Emergency Task Force to generate possible recommendations for action by the next full session of the General Assembly. The seven-member Task Force has been meeting in private for several months at the request of the Secretary General. The group includes various country representatives, highly knowledgeable scientific advisors, and relevant NGOs.  At this stage, the Secretary-General wants the Task Force to advise her on what the text ought to be of a motion that can be voted up or down by the General Assembly. Merely handing off the problem to one of the UN’s existing bodies is not acceptable. While it may take several years to draft a formal international treaty and create a new global regulatory regime, the Secretary-General wants the General Assembly to take a definitive stand one way or the other.

Major lessons in this simulation include:

  • Developing coalition-building strategies in a multi-party negotiating context;
  • Dealing with “spoilers” in an international negotiating setting.
  • Learning how to give scientific findings their due in international political negotiations.
  • Understanding the role that mediators can play in global policy negotiations.
  • Learning how to engage both official and unofficial representatives in a global policy dialogue.

Preview a Managing the Micronium Mess Teacher’s Package to learn more about this simulation.

Abraham Path: A Thousand Miles on Foot – New International Negotiation Simulation

This six-party, five-hour, multi-issue, non-scorable negotiation is between the Abraham Path Initiative (API) and local counterpart organizations in the Middle East over an attempt to agree on a public 1,000 mile cross-border trail through the region. The Abraham Path is a cultural route tracing Abraham’s footstep across the present-day Middle East. The path offers hikers the opportunity to engage with the peoples and landscapes of the region firsthand, and to see the region from a new perspective. The path offers an intriguing case of very challenging, long-term negotiations to establish a contiguous route through often-hostile countries; if fully successful, the Abraham Path could have powerful regional implications for economic development, mutual engagement, and peace-building.

API is an international NGO which plans to sponsor and co-organize the 1,000+ mile journey to raise publicity, money, and to celebrate its achievements in helping to develop local walking trails across the region. Apart from the adventure filmmaker that it sponsors, API has partnered with four local partner organizations, each of which have their own interests at stake in the final design for the walk. Before the walk can move forward, the parties must deal with two main issues:

  1. The Route – what the route will be and which of the four national trails will be included.
  2. Branding & Communication – what the brand of the thru-hike event will be and how substance will be communicated to global and local audiences.

The negotiation takes place in two phases:

Phase 1: the pre-meeting phase of the negotiation. In this phase, only two participants (API and the Adventurer) may initiate contact with other participants and only bilaterally.

Phase 2: the in-person meeting phase, where all parties negotiate at the World Trail Conference.

Major lessons in this simulation include:

  • Coalition formation and spoilers in multiparty negotiations. How do parties in negotiation deal with spoilers and develop an effective spoiler management strategy?
  • The role of values in negotiation. How do parties negotiate core values?
  • How public perceptions can impact the positions parties take at the negotiation table.

Preview an Abraham Path Teacher’s Package to learn more about this simulation.


Take your training to the next level with the TNRC

The Teaching Negotiation Resource Center offers a wide range of effective teaching materials, including

TNRC negotiation exercises and teaching materials are designed for educational purposes. They are used in college classroom settings or corporate training settings; used by mediators and facilitators seeking to introduce their clients to a process or issue; and used by individuals who want to enhance their negotiation skills and knowledge.

Negotiation exercises and role-play simulations introduce participants to new negotiation and dispute resolution tools, techniques and strategies. Our videos, books, case studies, and periodicals are also a helpful way of introducing students to key concepts while addressing the theory and practice of negotiation.

Check out all that the TNRC has in store >>

Related Posts


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *