Year 2 students have spent this week coming to understand the complex issues surrounding development, foreign direct investment, and the (perceived?) tension between nationalization and privatization. The class took part in the Meridia and Petrocentram simulation via the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School. Students worked in groups of four; two students representing the fictional government of Merida and two students representing the fictional oil firm Petrocentram. As you can see from the chart above (complete table here) each group found various ways to negotiate their perceived interests towards reaching a settlement. One of the (many) interesting topics that came up in the debrief is the topics of asymmetric information. Both parties in this simulation have access to information and prescribed preferences that the other side is not privy to. As a result, strategy, negotiating posture, and the various outcomes itself were functions of the different sets of information available to the parties. Of course, its easy to see how one could connect these issues to real world situations world politics; the students certainly did.