Foreign Service lnstitute "Slobbovia" Negotiation (Slobbovia)
Description : The Slobbovia Simulation represents a negotiation between two countries over six issues. Each country is represented by an Inter-governmental Team
(IGT) and a Negotiating Team (NT), and communications are restricted between
these groups. Participants are given individual role scoresheets which permit individual assessment of different outcomes on issues. The exercise represents the
difficulties that bureaucratic politics and incomplete communications present in
Use : The Simulation is conducted in one day. It requires 16 participants, 4 for
each IGT and NT. Documentation includes a 5 page scenario and individual
scoresheets. The exercise is included as an appendix in Winham and
Bovis ( 1978).
It has been conducted frequently in negotiation training courses at FSI since 1972.
Such as the Studies, Analysis and Gaming Agency (SAGA), which reports to the
U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staffs.
There is a similar complementarity between simulation and business decision-making,
resulting in increasing use of simulations in business schools. See
Faria ( 1987).
Exceptions to this generalization would include an all-computerized diplomatic game
Bensen, 1961); an interactive man-machine collective bargaining game (
Murphy, et al., 1982); and even the author's Trade Negotiation Simulation, which in its original form
was designed to be played by paid subjects (graduate students) for heuristic and predictive
Simulation here refers to a role-playing exercise with human subjects.
This principle has application beyond commercial negotiation, and especially to the
negotiation of collective goods. For example, when nations reach agreement to limit arms
or to reduce environmental pollution, it is possible that benefits from the agreements will
be realized by nations not party to the agreement.
A further effect of the computer was to reduce the political and psychological component in the simulation, and to increase the economic and technical component. The
development of a computer model of seabed mining had a similar effect on negotiation
behavior at the UN Conference on the Law of the Sea.
Axelrod Robert M. ( 1984). The Evolution of Cooperation. New York: Basic Books.
Bloomfield Lincoln P. ( 1984). "Reflections on Gaming." Orbis 27:4, 783-90.
Bloomfield Lincoln P., and
Cornelius J. Gearin. ( 1973). "Games Foreign Policy Experts Play: The Political Exercise Comes of Age." Orbis 16:4, 1008-31.
Bracken Paul. ( 1984). "Deterrence Gaming and Game Theory." Orbis 27:4, 790-802.
Brademeier Mary E., and
Cathy Stein Greenblat. ( 1981). "The Educational Effectiveness
of Simulation Games: A Synthesis of Findings." Simulation and Games 12:3, 307-32.