Cross-Cultural Negotiation, Inter-Group Conflict Resolution, and the Role of NGOs

PADM-GP.4105, 1.5 points.

Semester: Spring


Beyond the basics of negotiation lie areas of greater complexity. One such area is the realm of culture. The role of culture can be considered from several perspectives: Cross-cultural (attempting, from one cultural perspective, to understand or describe another); intercultural (the interplay of cultures); and transcultural (aspects of negotiation that are common to all cultures or, in intercultural situations, transcend them.

Culture can be thought of in terms of both the relatively simple, though not unimportant, aspect of etiquette and behavior, and the more complex and profound aspect of consciousness and worldview. In the first half of the course, we will consider:
• The challenges of doing cultural analysis;
• A framework of cultural variables that comprise or underlie negotiation styles;
• Empirical studies about the differences that culture appears to make in the negotiation process;
• Cultural challenges in management; and
• The implications of these insights for reflective practitioners.

The second focus of the course is on the theory and practice of inter-group conflict resolution, which often has an important intercultural component, and the role of NGOs in that work. NGOs often can play an important role in peacemaking processes, though there can be tensions between NGOs and countries that are trying to resolve the conflict at the official diplomatic level. This section of the course will include a consideration of the many challenges of using inter-group processes to reduce tension and the possibility that well-intentioned western intervenors may inadvertently bring counterproductive cultural assumptions to such interventions.

The final session will be devoted primarily to playing and discussing a simulation involving an interethnic crossborder


PADM-GP.4101 or URPL-GP.4604

Semester Instructor Syllabus Link
Spring 2012Allen ZerkinSyllabus
Spring 2010Allen ZerkinSyllabus
Spring 2010Allen ZerkinSyllabus
Spring 2009Allen ZerkinSyllabus
Fall 2008Allen ZerkinSyllabus
Semester Instructor Evaluation Link
Fall 2014Allen ZerkinEvaluation
Spring 2013Allen ZerkinEvaluation
Spring 2012Zerkin, AllenEvaluation
Spring 2010Zerkin, AllenEvaluation
Fall 2008Zerkin, AllenEvaluation
Spring 2008Zerkin, AllenEvaluation
Spring 2009Zerkin, AllenEvaluation
Puck with Street Sign

Zerkin, Allen Jay

Weekly Schedule:
Fri - 11:00 am to 12:40 pm
Fri - 11:00 am to 12:40 pm
Fri - 9:20 am to 11:00 am

Session Dates:
10/23/2015 to 10/23/2015
10/30/2015 to 10/30/2015
10/23/2015 to 12/11/2015

Fri - Bldg: 7E12 Rm: LL21
Fri - Bldg:25W4 Room:C-2