Negotiation, conflict management & mediation are key skills for managers and leaders of companies and organizations everywhere. Over the last three years, more than 300 students/participants from the School’s Grande Ecole Master’s in Management, International & Executive MBA programs have used an online mediation simulator to learn about and cultivate these key skills.
Developed by CEDR, Europe’s largest independent ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) organization, the simulator uses a ‘serious game’ to train participants. Each player takes the role of the mediator and must work with the different parties, from the initial phone call with the lawyers until the signing of the settlement agreement at the end of a successful mediation.
During this interactive game, each of the choices made impact the direction and outcome of the dispute. Mediator players receive feedback showing how the parties have reacted to each of their proposals, and on their performance through a scoring system with a summary of learning points achieved.
Ann-Sophie De Pauw, Professor of International Negotiation at IÉSEG, explains: “I have introduced the CEDR Simulator to my courses on the MBA programs and the Master in Management because it is an extremely interactive and innovative tool. All students use the simulator at the very beginning of the course so they are introduced, through a serious game, to the key elements of negotiation and mediation in very practical manner. I then get them to use the simulator again at the end of the course to test what they have learned, and how they have progressed and developed key competencies for negotiation and mediation practice. “
IÉSEG was the first business school internationally to start using this simulator. This pedagogical innovation is in line with IÉSEG’s Teaching and Learning strategy, which seeks to develop students’ personal and professional competencies via active and interdisciplinary learning.