Negotiation and Mediation - POLI8481

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2024 to 2025.


The course provides an overview and framework for considering the evolving field of international conflict resolution with an emphasis on negotiation and mediation. The module will focus primarily on the practical as well as on the theoretical aspects of negotiation and mediation, or more broadly third party intervention in conflicts. Its aims are to give the students an overview of the main problems involved in negotiation and mediation (broadly defined), but also to give them a chance to work individually and in groups on case studies and material related to the resolution of conflicts. The course is designed to introduce the students to theories of negotiation and bargaining, discuss the applicability of various tools and techniques in problem solving real cases of international conflict, and allow them to make use of such techniques in role playing and simulations.


Contact hours


Method of assessment

Essay 1, 2,000 words (20%)
Essay 2, 4,000-5,000 words (80%)

Indicative reading

Carlsnaes, Walter, Thomas Risse, and Beth A Simmons, eds. 2002. Handbook of International Relations. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE
Hugh Miall, Oliver Ramsbotham, Tom Woodhouse (2005). Contemporary Conflict Resolution: The Prevention, Management and Transformation of Deadly Conflicts, Cambridge: Polity.
Thomas Schelling. (1960). The Strategy of Conflict. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.
Azar, Edward E. The Management of Protracted Social Conflict: Theory and Cases. Bookfield, VT: Gower Pub. Co., 1990. Thomas Princen (1992) Intermediaries in International Conflict. Princeton University Press.
I. William Zartman and J. Lewis Rasmussen, eds. (1997). Peacemaking in International Conflict: Methods and Techniques, U.S. Institute of Peace Press

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Understand key historical and theoretical issues in the field of conflict resolution
8.2 Have some familiarity with the main theoretical schools that study mediation and negotiation
8.3 Understand the main concepts and techniques used in bilateral and multilateral negotiation as well as in mediation, the most common form of conflict management and resolution
8.4 Experience the practice of negotiation and mediation through a series of practical exercises conducted throughout the module
8.5 Gain familiarity with the applied methodological and epistemological methods in the field of conflict resolution
8.6 Critically analyse historical and current cases of conflict management and transformation
9.1 Work with theoretical knowledge at the forefront of their discipline
9.2 Engage critically with the conflict resolution process, in particular negotiation and mediation, including the vocabulary, concepts, theories and methods of conflict resolution
9.3 Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of methods and methodologies in their discipline
9.4 Demonstrate reasoned arguments, supported by relevant information, and exercise critical thinking
9.5 Show a level of conceptual understanding that will allow them to critically evaluate research, advanced scholarship and methodologies and argue alternative approaches
9.6 Describe, evaluate and apply different approaches involved in collecting, analysing and presenting political information
9.7 Engage in academic and professional communication orally and in writing
9.8 Demonstrate independent learning ability required for continuing professional study
9.9 Collaborate with others and contribute effectively to the achievement of common goals


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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