Since November 2013, South Africa and Clingendael Academy have been closely working together in the organisation of mediation programmes for Africa.
This time, 24 African women mediators from the SADC were trained in Pretoria on conflict resolution, negotiation and mediation. Mr. Ron Ton, Director Clingendael Academy provided the module on negotiation techniques.
The two days of training aimed at increasing the understanding of the negotiation process during mediated conflict resolution. Insight was given in strategic concepts, methodologies to stay in control of complex negotiations and in negotiation styles. Various practical exercises were included, amongst others self-assessments aiming at identifying personal negotiation behaviour and that of opponents.
On the final day a simulation game based on conflict resolution negotiations offered the participants the opportunity to practice various skills. Sir Robert Cooper, a highly distinguished EU negotiator and mediator with in-depth experience in Balkan negotiation processes, was present in the afternoon to shed light on the practicalities and difficulties in the negotiations.
Finally, a discussion took place on the need to promote the role of African women in mediation and negotiation peace processes in the African continent. Important conclusions were to invest more in mediation training programmes for women, in strengthening resolutions and protocols, in improved gender policies at member state levels giving better opportunities for women to partake in peace negotiation teams, and to strengthen monitoring systems.
Negotiation as a conflict resolution instrument is a new initiative of Clingendael Academy, supported by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The flyer below explains more about the special services Clingendael Academy can provide to mediators and negotiation teams in conflict resolution all over the world.