Exercises In Cross-Cultural Negotiations in Japan

This web page and its related subpages contain materials which I developed for a course entitled "East-West Negotiations" which I taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law during the spring terms of 1994, 1995 and 1996 in the Law Faculty of Temple Universitiy-Japan. These materials were developed to help students become familiar with the difficulties in cross-cultural negotiations and to develop skills to overcome these difficulties. Each problem has been developed based on actual business negotiations (substantially edited to protect the innocent) with which the author is familiar.

Each problem may be used (without reference to any other problem) in a laboratory context to illustrate common difficulties experienced in cross-cultural negotiations between Japanese and westerners (particularly Americans). Best results are achieved where the "Japanese side" is represented by Japanese businesspersons, preferably persons having some familiarity with commercial business practices in Japan (familiarity with negotiatiating with the Japanese government is especially helpful). Students acting as western businesspersons should have a basic understanding of international commercial and financial business practices at a graduate level. Some orientation prior to each negotiation also can be helpful.

There is no particular "solution" to any of the problems (a fact that many of my students found hard to accept). The learning is in the experience of the problems and in the integration of that experience into one's inherent negotiating strengths and weaknesses. Teachers are cautioned to compose negotiating teams carefully and spread students with business experience evenly among teams.

These materials are subject to copyright, but may be used freely for academnic purposes in connection with any business school, school of government or ABA accredited law school course provided credit is given to the author. They may not be used, or adapted for use, in a commercial negotiations or similar course without the author's express consent.

A Simple Business Negotiation

A Sensitive Personnel Negotiation

A More Complex Commercial Negotiation

Negotiating With the Government

Negotiating a Joint-Venture

Sample Final Examination

© Christopher P. Wells 1993-1996

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