International Relations Role-Play:

Tulia and Ibad Mediation Using political and creative skill to mediate mutually beneficial options amid high-stakes


William Ury, Ibrahim Ibrahim and Roger Fisher

Three-team, multi-issue mediation involving two or more representatives each of the country of Tulia, the country of Ibad, and the Organization of African Unity (O.A.U.) regarding a cease-fire between the two warring countries


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.


Eight days ago, Tulian rebels attacked a police station in the Tulian President's hometown of Toji. In retaliation, Tulian troops attacked a rebel camp 20 miles inside neighboring Ibad. The troops were withdrawn, but yesterday rebel forces backed by Ibadi troops invaded southern Tulia and advanced on Toji with the announced intention of pressing on to the Capital to overthrow the President. The President has requested Organization of African Unity (O.A.U.) intervention, and the O.A.U. has called for a cease-fire and sent a delegation to a neighboring neutral country to meet with representatives of Tulia and Ibad.



Either party and/or the mediator can be represented by 1 to 3 participants. The materials include charts for Interests and Currently Perceived Choice analyses. These can take 15-60 minutes or more to prepare. The meeting itself should probably run at least an hour. Videotaping and/or close observation are essential for maximally effective feedback to the mediator.



For all parties:

General Information:

  • Chronology
  • General Background
  • Map
  • Positions and Interests Worksheet


Role Specific:

Confidential Instructions to the:

  • Ibadi Negotiators — with a Currently Perceived Worksheet for Tulia
  • Tulian Negotiators — with a Currently Perceived Choice Worksheets for Tulia and Ibad


Teacher's Package:

  • All of the above
  • Illustrative Completed Worksheets
  • Draft Teaching Instructions



Agenda control; Caucusing; Commitment; Communication; Compliance; Confidentiality; Constituents; Currently perceived choice analysis; Force; Issue control; Linkage; Mediation; Meeting design; One-text procedure; Options, generating; Political constraints, dealing with; Precedents; Public opinion; Reality testing; Risk aversion; Self-help; Threats; Time constraints



This is an good, straightforward mediation exercise in an international context. Detailed review of precise language, ordering of issues, use of caucuses, and framing of issues can be enormously rewarding. Close observation and/or videotaping is invaluable, although student-student review is also useful.

"Face-saving" and legitimacy are important factors in fashioning agreement that can be explored at length in review.

Considerable political and creative skill is needed to fashion a mutually beneficial option and present it in a politically acceptable package. "Issue control" is thus highlighted as a separate concept from the substance of any proposal.

Tulia and Ibad Mediation Attributes

Time required: 1-2 hours
Number of participants: 3
Teams involved: No
Agent present: Non-lawyer
Neutral third party present: Mediator
Scoreable: No
Teaching notes available: Yes
Non-English version available: Spanish, Croatian