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By Mark Young and Joana Matos Rational Games, Inc.

As some of our followers and readers may know, we have in recent years had the honor of serving as jury members for both the WNR – Warsaw Negotiation Round and the TNC – The Negotiation Challenge two of the leading competitive events in the international academic negotiation competition challenges.

In both events, teams from universities around the world vie for the honor of making it to the finals to participate in an intensive joust for the ultimate win-win experience.  In the age of Zoom, time zones add up to an extra challenge here, with many teams up all night preparing for, and engaging in, what can be a grueling competition.

We do this pro bono work gladly for several reasons:

  1. It is a joy to watch gifted and smart young people honing their negotiation skills in a friendly “gamified” format.  The energy, creativity, and curiosity on display are truly inspiring.  We learn at least as much as they do from the experience.

  2. We have great respect for our colleagues Remi Smolinski at TNC and Michalina Tarasiuk and the team at the WNR (who work tirelessly to put these events on every year). Just the logistics of this planning, be it online or in person, are daunting, and our few hours donated are a small contribution in comparison.  We are proud to make this contribution to the international academic and practitioner community.

  3. Our emerging research on digital negotiation and how it differs from in-person encounters (truly one of the “hot topics” of our time) is greatly enriched by the real data derived from these sessions. How else would one have the chance to watch and analyze full-scale negotiation from the birds-eye perspective?

  4. We can connect with like-minded negotiation enthusiasts! Teachers and trainers from all corners of the world serve as juries or trainers of the participating teams and together we exchange ideas, debate new teaching methods or research, and forge new friendships.

And so congratulations to this year’s winners of TNC: NUCB Business School / MBA from Nagoya, Japan, and winners of WNR: University on Twente from the Netherlands! We look forward to 2022, with you hopefully once again in person.

Comments welcome!


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