Global Negotiation Conference 2014
Negotiating Climate Change
Hosted by the University of Bern and the World Trade Institute
The inaugural Global Negotiation Conference was held on the 3-5 September 2014 at the World Trade Institute/University of Bern, Switzerland. Twelve teams attended the conference and took part in a negotiation simulation modelled on the talks taking place to adopt a new international treaty to tackle climate change. The speakers included professionals and academics who illustrated the barriers to an agreement as well as offering inventive solutions to the current stalemate.
Students in attendance represented the University of Aarhus (Denmark), University of Bayreuth (Germany), University of Bern (Switzerland), University of Bucharest (Romania), University of Lausanne (Switzerland), University of Sussex (United Kingdom), University of Zürich (Switzerland), ETH Zürich (Switzerland), Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (Russia) and École Polytechnique Féderale de Lausanne (Switzerland).
The students came from a range of academic disciplines including law, political science, the natural sciences, philosophy and economics. This diversity in backgrounds provided a stimulating and interesting mix of people, with different perspectives and approaches to the task at hand and ideas on negotiation in general.
The teams all performed exceptionally in the simulation and after over six hours of negotiation eventually achieved an agreement. The teams that were deemed to be the most influential and constructive in reaching an agreement, by both their peers and the judges in attendance, were those from ETH Zürich (representing the EU) and the University of Aarhus (representing Russia) with the latter team marginally ahead seeing them crowned the most constructive team of the year.