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A contract is an agreement having a lawful object entered into voluntarily by two or more parties, each of whom intends to create one or more legal obligations between them. The elements of a contract are "offer" and "acceptance" by "competent persons" having legal capacity who exchange "consideration" to create "mutuality of obligation."

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Case Studies & Articles

Stephen Weiss and Sarah Tatrallyay

This case study centers on the most challenging task for a negotiator: to reach a satisfactory agreement with a tough counterpart from a position of low power—and to do so in an uncommon context. The case concerns the executive director of a zoo in the U.S. who seeks two giant pandas, an endangered species, from their only source on the planet: China.

The Great Negotiator Collection

Role Simulations

Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

MC Metals

Dan Delisi, under the supervision of Lawrence Susskind and Paul Levy
Six-person integrative negotiation among representatives of manufacturing company, occupational safety agency, union, local fire department, and local technical expert to settle claims of safety violations that allegedly caused two employee deaths
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Monroe Energy Assistance Game I

Allan Morgan and Lawrence Susskind
Six-party, four-issue negotiation among representatives of consumer groups, political leaders, and public utilities to develop a statewide energy assistance plan for low-income residents
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Monroe Energy Assistance Game II

Jeffrey B. Litwak and Lawrence Susskind
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Mountain View Farm

Roger Fisher and Andrew Clarkson
Two-party, multi-issue integrative negotiation between a farmer and a neighbor over the sale or lease of part of the neighbor's land
Role Simulation
Business and Commercial Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

Mouse Exercise

Geoffrey Fink and Maria Baute Stewart
Seven-party, multi-issue negotiation among a theme-park developer, neighboring mayors, a regional organization, and a national government representative over the development of a proposed theme park; involves coalition-building and cultural issues
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Multisearch Software

Eric Gould and Michelle Easter
Two-party integrative negotiation between a software developer and a software manufacturer over a possible contract for a new search engine product
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Multisumma

Patricia Moore and Hal Movius with Lawrence Susskind
Six-party, four-issue negotiation among representatives of several international aircraft companies over the terms of a potential long-term partnership
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

National Energy Policy Simulation

Eric Jay Dolin, Daniel Greenberg and Lawrence Susskind
Highly complex multi-party, multi-issue negotiation among political, industry, environmental, and consumer leaders and lobbyists to develop a detailed proposal to reduce U.S. vulnerability to changes in energy prices and supply
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Nazi Party of America v. Town of Hokey

Bruce Patton
Two-party highly political negotiation between a lawyer for Nazi convention organizers and a town attorney a permit application for a Nazi Party parade in a Jewish neighborhood
Role Simulation
Public Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiated Development in Redstone

Lawrence Susskind and John Forester
Two-party, two-issue scoreable negotiation between a developer and a neighborhood association representative regarding the development terms of a new condominium project
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiated Rulemaking for Electric Utilities

Jonathan Raab and Lavinia Hall
Five-person facilitated negotiation among environmental, industry, public utility, and government representatives to revise a proposed rule incorporating environmental costs into electric utility rates
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiating Budget Cuts at Newtowne Hospital

Lawrence Susskind
Six-person negotiation among hospital administration and employee representatives to reach consensus on budget cuts in three departments
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiating with Another Federal Agency

Larry Susskind (MIT), Ona Ferguson, and Meredith Sciarrio
Two, separate, two-person, non-scorable negotiations: one between Technical Co-chairs from the Center for Disease Control and USAID; the other between a CDC Technical Co-Chair and the Minister of Health in the imaginary host country of Sabada.
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiating with the Ministry of Health

Larry Susskind (MIT), Ona Ferguson, and Meredith Sciarrio
Two, separate, two-person, non-scorable negotiations: one between Technical Co-chairs from the Center for Disease Control and USAID; the other between a CDC Technical Co-Chair and the Minister of Health in the imaginary host country of Sabada.
Role Simulation
Corporate Decision-Making Negotiation Role-Play:

Negotiation of Rabbi Ben Newman's Employment Contract, The

Three party, single-issue negotiation of a rabbi’s employment contract
Role Simulation
Community Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

Neighborhood Care, Inc.

Lawrence Susskind and Bruce Patton
Two-party negotiation or mediation between church and neighborhood representatives over the possible use of church facilities for services for the mentally challenged
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

New Crimea Prison Overcrowding Simulation

Susan Podziba and Lawrence Susskind
Eight-party, multi-issue negotiation among prison administrators, government leaders, criminal justice advocates, and prisoners' rights advocates to develop recommendations for a comprehensive state policy to alleviate prison overcrowding
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Ocean Splash

The Consensus Building Institute, Inc.
Two-party, two-issue scoreable negotiation between a charity and a corporate sponsor regarding the number and placement of advertising banners at a fundraising walk
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Offshore Wind Farm Negotiation

MIT Students in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning, under the supervision of Prof. Lawrence Susskind and Dr. Herman Karl
8-party nonscorable negotiation among commercial, environmental, and governmental stakeholders over a controversial proposal to develop offshore wind farms
Role Simulation
Roger Fisher
Two-team, scoreable, multiple round, "prisoner's dilemma"-style negotiation between representatives of two countries over the monthly price for barrels of oil.
Role Simulation
Chris Jost, under the direction of David Fairman
Six-party negotiation among Hutu and Tutsi villagers regarding competing land claims and local authority issues in the wake of the Rwandan genocide
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Onembo and Benjamin Rug Co. v. Runyon and Lebeau

Karen Falkenstein Green
Three-person small claims court mediation between a rug company owner and a customer over the return of a made-to-order rug
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Open Lands A Private Planning Negotiation

Patrick Field, Ric Richardson, and John Harrison
Eight-person facilitated negotiation among seven landowners to develop voluntary private land-use plan to provide financial security while preserving open space and agricultural land
Role Simulation
Business and Commercial Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

Parking Facility Venture

Three-party scoreable negotiation among three firms regarding the joint construction of an off-street parking facility; variation of "Three-Party Coalition"
Role Simulation
International Relations Negotiation Role-Play:

Parking Spaces for Super Computer

Consensus Building Institute, Inc.
Two-party, two-issue scoreable negotiation between an office building owner and commercial tenant over the terms of a lease for parking spaces
Role Simulation
Game Theory and Negotiation Analytics Role-Play:

Pepulator Pricing Exercise

Mark Drooks and Mark Gordon
Two-team, scoreable, multiple round, "prisoner's dilemma"-style negotiation between representatives of two companies over the monthly price for fictional products called "pepulators"
Role Simulation
Business and Commercial Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

PowerScreen Problem

Bruce Patton, Mark Gordon and Andrew Clarkson
Two-party integrative negotiation between the lawyers for business partners concerning the ownership of a new computer program one of them has developed

Video and Audio

Videos and Audio

Lawrence Susskind

An educational video for mediators or mediation students regarding mediator responsibility when parties have unequal knowledge, skills or power

Books

original
Book

Jeswald Salacuse

Arguing that life is really a series of negotiations, deal making, and diplomacy, Salacuse gives readers the tools to make the most of any situation.
original
Book
A practical explanation of how to transition from a deal-maker mentality (focusing on making the agreement) to an implementation mindset (ensuring the deal generates value for your company after the ink on the contract has dried)
original
Book
From the coauthor of Getting to YES, a simple yet powerful three-step method for saying No firmly and effectively, without destroying relationships

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