Environmental Role-Play:

Federal Lands Management I Matching the Process to the Situation


Consensus Building Institute, Montana Consensus Council, and Bureau of Land Management

Facilitated multi-party negotiation over the appropriate decision-making process for a federal land management dispute


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 tnrc@law.harvard.edu 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 http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at tnrc@law.harvard.edu, 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.

Jackson County covers 4,000 square miles in the northern Rocky Mountains and is home to about 10,000 people. The U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management manage more than 70 percent of the land. For more than 100 years, the timber industry and ranchers have relied on federal lands to conduct their businesses. But newcomers to Jackson County and national environmental groups are challenging this relationship, often leading to contentious battles both in and out of the courtroom.

Last month, the Coalition to Preserve the Watershed (CPW) announced its intent to petition the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list the Rocky Mountain spotted trout as threatened and/or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Watersheds in Jackson County form the heart of the spotted trout’s fairly limited range. CPW claims that current land-use practices, chiefly cattle grazing and timber harvesting, have severely harmed water quality and habitat integrity.

At the request of a concerned group of citizens in Jackson County, the State Office of Dispute Resolution and Consensus Building asked the identifiable stakeholders, particularly the CPW and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, to suspend further action for 30 days and allow an impartial facilitator to conduct a situation assessment. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service would help fund a consensus-seeking process if the situation assessment indicated that the key stakeholders were willing to participate in good faith, and that the process might result in a mutual gain outcome, rather than the all-too-familiar win/lose outcome of the standard contentious ESA listing process.

J. Jones, a well-respected facilitator from the state office, conducted the situation assessment. Based on the results of the situation assessment, Jones has recommended that a core group of representatives from key stakeholder groups convene to design a collaborative process and then negotiate the substantive issues. The first goal of the stakeholder committee is to develop a process for guiding the negotiation. At least five critical issues must be discussed in depth:


  • What basic rules of conduct should be employed?
  • Who should be at the table?
  • What is the decision rule for the negotiations?
  • How will scientific and technical disagreements be handled?
  • What is the time frame for the negotiations?


Participant materials include:

  • General instructions for all participants


Confidential instructions for:

  • The Coalition to Preserve the Watershed, an anti-logging and grazing group, made up of members of several local, state, and regional environmental organizations
  • The Rocky Mountain Forest Association, a coalition of logging associations and wood product mills
  • The Western Stock Growers' Association, an organization representing ranch families, united for the common purpose of protecting and promoting the beef and sheep industries
  • The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, a federal agency with jurisdiction over threatened and endangered species, on private or public lands
  • The U.S. Forest Service, the federal agency that determines the amount and type of logging allowed, and issues grazing permits for forested land within the watershed
  • The Jackson County Commission, which is responsible for numerous county functions, including promoting the country's economic base: forestry, ranching, and tourism


Teacher's package includes:

  • All of the above (no teaching note currently available)


Note: This simulation is designed to introduce participants to consensus building process design. It may be used with or without  Federal Lands Management II, in which the participants negotiate the substantive land management issues.

Federal Lands Management I Attributes

Time required: Less than 30 minutes
Number of participants: 7
Teams involved: No
Agent present: None
Neutral third party present: Facilitator
Scoreable: No
Teaching notes available: No