Business and Commercial Role-Play:

DirtyStuff II


Jeffrey Litwak and Lawrence Susskind

Six-person, multi-issue facilitated negotiation among industry, environmental, consumer/community, labor, and government representatives to develop single-text regulation of toxic industrial by-product


Please note: you must order a copy (a.k.a. license/usage fee) for every person participating in the simulation in your course. This simulation has multiple roles, so you will be unable to complete your purchase without meeting the minimum quantity requirement of copies per role.

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PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center

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Soft copy vs. hard copy

You may order this role simulation in either soft copy (electronic) or hard copy (paper) format. If you select the soft copy option, you will receive an e-mail with a URL (website address) from which you may download an electronic file in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. You will have one week to download your materials from when you receive the email. You are then only authorized to use, print, or share the materials as many times as the number of copies you purchase. The TNRC charges for use of this simulation on a per-participant basis. Therefore, you must purchase a separate copy of this simulation for each person who will be participating, regardless of the number of roles in the simulation. You will only receive a link to one electronic file, which includes all general instructions, confidential instructions, and any teaching notes for the simulation. You should separate out the instructions before distributing to participants.

If you select the hard copy option, you will receive paper copies of this role simulation via the shipping method you select.

For additional information about the soft copy option, please visit our FAQ section, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at or 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.) or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.).

Please note: At the present time, Teaching Negotiation Resource Center soft copies are compatible with the following versions of the Adobe Acrobat Reader: English, German, French, Spanish, Swedish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Korean. If you have a different version of the Acrobat Reader, you may wish to download one of these at, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at, 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.), or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.) for further assistance. This restriction does not apply to the freely available Teacher’s Package Review Copies.

Ordering a single copy for review

If you wish to review the materials for a particular role simulation to decide whether you’d like to use it, a PDF, or soft copy, version of the Teacher’s Package for the simulation is available as a free download from the description page of most role simulations and case studies. All Teacher’s Packages include copies of all participant materials. In addition, some Teacher’s Packages (but not all) include additional teaching materials such as teaching notes or overhead masters.

Ordering copies for multiple participants

To order multiple copies of a role simulation for use in a course or workshop, simply enter the total number of participants in the box next to “Quantity.” There is no need to calculate how many of each role is required.

If you are ordering hard copies, the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center will calculate the appropriate numbers of each role to provide, based on the total number of participants. For example, if you wish to order a 2-party role simulation for use with a class of 30 students, you would enter “30” in the box next to “Quantity.” You then would receive 15 copies of one role and 15 copies of the other role, for use with your 30 participants. As another example, if you ordered 30 participant copies of a 6-party role simulation, you would receive 5 copies of each role.

In the event that the number of participant copies you order is not evenly divisible by the number of roles in the simulation, you will receive extra copies of one or more roles. Participants receiving the extra roles may partner with other participants playing the same role, thus negotiating as a team. So, for instance, if you ordered 31 copies of a 2-party role simulation, you would receive 15 copies of the first role and 16 copies of the second role. One of the participants playing the second role would partner with another participant playing that same role, and the two would negotiate as a team.

Bulk Pricing Discount

For bulk orders, we offer the following pricing discounts. Please note that these only apply to bulk orders of the same simulation.

  • Between 100-250 copies – 10% discount
  • Between 251-500 copies – 25% discount
  • More than 500 copies – 50% discount
Log In or Register to download the free Teacher's Package Sample.


Dirty Stuff is an industrial by-product of a large number of industrial processes that has recently found to have harmful health side-effects. A first meeting was convened at which a representative from environmental organizations, labor unions, industry groups, community groups and consumer groups would attend in order to discuss how Dirty Stuff is to be regulated. This meeting ended abruptly and in a highly emotional and hostile fashion – a fact which has become reported in the press. A second meeting has been convened and the various factions have agreed to enlist the help of a facilitator. The goal of the upcoming second meeting is to revise the proposed rule regarding the production and use of Dirty Stuff. This will be published in The Federal Register.



  • This exercise illustrates how an angry party can alter the tone or balance of a multiparty negotiation or create difficulties for a facilitator.
  • With such a wide range of possible agreements, the comparison of several groups' outcomes can demonstrate the usefulness of generating options. Some groups, however, might not reach agreement.
  • The facilitator may be asked to mediate or alternatively may simply act as a meeting manager and stay out of the negotiations, depending on how the parties act.
  • Caucusing can lead to the formation of blocking coalitions. The effect of caucusing on the prospects of reaching agreements can be compared across groups.
  • The usefulness of a single negotiating text is illustrated. This gives parties a focal point for discussion and a tool for recording the evolving agreement. This can clarify differences and help parties structure packages or trade-offs more creatively.
  • Contingent agreements may hold the key to dealing with technical uncertainty.



This exercise is written to include six roles, however, more than one person may be assigned to any role. Players have 45 minutes to prepare, including time for caucusing between parties with the same role. Actual negotiations should take less than 90 minutes. Debriefing will require at least 45 minutes to compare and discuss outcomes.



For all parties:

  • General Information
  • Draft of the Proposed Rule
  • Article from newspaper
  • Fact about DirtyStuff Cleanup technologies


Role specific:

Confidential Advice to

  • Agency Negotiator
  • Consumer Negotiator
  • Environmental Coalition Negotiator
  • Industry Negotiator
  • Labor Negotiator
  • Facilitator


Teacher's Package:

  • All of the above



Agenda control; Bluffing; Caucusing; Coalitions; Communication; Competition v. Cooperation; Compliance; Consensus building; Creativity; Decision analysis; Drafting; Fairness; Group process; Information exchange; Interest analysis; Joint gains; Meaning of "success"; Mediation; Options, generating; Packaging; Partisan perceptions; Public opinion; Relationship; Risk aversion; Yesable propositions



Negotiated rule-making; simple text negotiation; facilitation; science-intensive policy disputes; using contingent agreements to cope with scientific uncertainty



Dirty Stuff I

Dioxin – Waste to Energy

Teflex Products

The Carson Extension

DirtyStuff II Attributes

Time required: 2-3 hours
Number of participants: 6
Teams involved: No
Agent present: Non-lawyer
Neutral third party present: Facilitator
Scoreable: No
Teaching notes available: No
Non-English version available: French, Spanish, German