CCTP-724-01 Multilateral Negotiations
Fall for 2011-2012
Multilateral negotiations are complex, hard, and fraught with controversies. However, they are generally recognized as offering actors the opportunity to reduce transaction costs by negotiating one set of deals rather than several bilateral or regional ones. Especially in the last century, multilateralism and multilateral negotiations are also often posited as more legitimate ways of resolving international disputes and conflicts than by unilateral or bilateral means. Their efficacy also featured prominently in the recent U.S. Presidential campaign. Nevertheless, multilateral negotiations can be costly and time consuming; in toning down negotiating advantages of any on actor, they may be seen as offering disappointing results to great powers or those with a major stake in the international system or a given issue-area.
This course provides a context for understanding the importance of multilateral negotiations in four parts with respect to both economic and security negotiations. The first part traces the historical evolution of multilateral negotiations and notes the rise of the legitimacy of multilateral diplomacy. The second part examines several strategies and tactics employed in multilateral negotiations. The third part of the course will examine specific issue areas for illustration from security, economics, environment, human rights, and technology. The final part of the course returns to broad themes underlying multilateralism in the context of international law.
The course requires heavy participation and employs the case study method of teaching drawing upon cases from Harvard Business School, Kennedy School of Government, and the Pew cases from the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy. Required exercises include a briefing paper and a strategy paper written for global actors in on-going negotiations.
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Fall '11: Singh, J.P. (description, file download)
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