Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Successful simulation on Nigerian politics

Juliette Zener, who teaches in Massachusetts, posted this on the AP Comparative Facebook page. If you missed it, here is her message and recommendation.

Globalization and Nigerian Oil Simulation
I just ran this online simulated negotiation (Globalization and Nigerian Oil) from the University of Maryland's ICONS project with my students to close out our Nigeria unit… It is an 8-part negotiation that is run via the ICONS website. It was a real success.

We received a discount so, for my 8 students it cost $120 to run. I believe the folks at ICONS are really interested in getting Comp Gov't classes to participate so they are willing to come down on their standard pricing. The 8 roles are: Nigerian gov't; Nigerian military; Ogoni; coalition of women's groups; IMF; Greenpeace; Human Rights Watch. Participants receive general as well as confidential instructions. Truly a great resource!

From the ICONS Project description: "Students will take on the roles of eight parties involved in the political economy of the Niger Delta region of Nigeria -- ranging from the Nigerian military, to Shell Oil, to the IMF. A scenario is provided along with a private role sheet to give students additional information about their assigned role's positions and interests. This simulation includes an opportunity for students to develop, debate, and vote on specific proposal plans to address the issues in the scenario. Students build proposal plans using a series of pre-loaded options."

Other simulations, that might be wonderful for post-exam times include
  • Borders, Environment, and Trade in the Americas: Representing the national governments of countries in North America, South America, and the Caribbean, students in this simulation will debate strategies for addressing the region's security, economic, and environmental problems.
  • Confronting Globalization: Challenge students to examine the effects of globalization from a variety of perspectives as they portray six countries tasked with identifying a shared response to globalization among developed and developing nations. Students represent China, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, and the UK
  • European Union: Cast as officials from EU member states, students in this simulation examine the overlapping issues of the economy, security and human rights in the European Union and work to develop shared solutions to some of the region's most pressing issues.
  • International System: This simulation focuses on military security, human security, and economic issues affecting the international community. Student teams portray various nations and negotiate online to develop solutions to important global problems.
  • Northern Ireland: Contested Ground: Set in a small town in Northern Ireland, students portray local residents on a committee tasked with determining the location for a new technology training center in town. This simulation challenges students to negotiate in a contentious environment and build community in a region with a long history of religious and political tension.

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