15.667 | Spring 2001 | Graduate

Negotiation and Conflict Management


To ease navigation through the 15.667 web site, the topics, readings, and assignments for each class have been split into separate pages. A version of the syllabus is also available below that lists all aspects of each class together.

Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 1 session / week, 3 hours / session

Course syllabus and calendar, including assignments and readings (PDF)

Course Description

Negotiation and Conflict Management presents negotiation theory – strategies and styles – within an employment context. 15.667 meets only eleven times, with a different topic each week, which is why students should commit to attending all classes. In addition to the theory and exercises presented in class, students practice negotiating with role-playing simulations that cover a range of topics, including difficult situations such as cross-cultural mentoring and an emergency. Other special cases discussed include abrasiveness, dangerousness, racism, sexism, whistleblowing, and ethics. The course covers conflict management as a first party and as a third party: third-party skills include helping others deal directly with their conflicts, mediation, investigation, arbitration, and helping the system change as a result of a dispute.

Course Materials

Three books for the class are on reserve and at the campus bookstore – these textbooks are classics which may be useful for reference in the future. I assign all of Lewicki, and all of Ury. I assign brief sections of Moore. You can read Moore on reserve – or consider buying the book, if you will often be a “third party”.

  • Lewicki, Roy J., David M. Saunders, and John W. Minton. Essentials of Negotiation. 2nd ed. Irwin, 2000. This is a new paperback – not the same text as last year.
  • Moore, Christopher W. The Mediation Process. 2nd ed. Jossey-Bass, 1996.
  • Ury, William. Getting Past No: Negotiating with Difficult People. Bantam, 1992.
  • Other readings are on sale in the campus copy center, (15.667 Class Notes).

If you are interested in “speaking the same language” as others who have had negotiations courses around the world, buy and read all of Roger Fisher and William Ury’s little paperback, Getting to Yes (Arrow, 1991). (Ury has also just published a controversial paperback, The Third Side: Why We Fight and How We Can Stop. USA: Penguin, 2000.) If you are interested in the importance of social skills and negotiation skills to business success, buy or borrow Daniel Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence (Bantam, 1997) – and read all of it when you can.

Course Expectations

The course is based on: readings, simulations and class discussions, four self-assessments, your analysis of the negotiations of others (known as Separate Pages), writing each week in your journal, and writing three Little Papers. There is no exam. 15.667 meets only eleven times – with a different topic each week – which is why I ask for a commitment that students come to all classes, barring health or family emergencies. (Students basically cannot do a “make-up.”) The course ends a week early. There is a double class for Session 11 with pizza and a guest speaker so the course can end early.

Ethical expectations: Students are encouraged to work together with a classmate on any assignment. However, in preparing for a role, they may only work together with someone else who has the same role.


Grades are based 50% on class work and 50% on writing: your Little Papers, the journal and Separate Pages. Students should write in their confidential journals and write evaluations of their colleagues every week. I will read the papers, keep them confidential, and return them at the next class – no one else sees them.

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2001
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Notes
Written Assignments
Instructor Insights