International Negotiation Competition


Applications for the 2020 competition will open on 20 December!

The International Negotiation Competition was founded in 2015 and is proudly sponsored by Maynooth University Department of Law. The competition draws students and young lawyers from all across the world, from India to the United States as well as from around Europe. It is designed to foster the skills of negotiation in students of law at an early stage in their careers and to provide the opportunity to gain first-hand negotiation experience in an international setting.


The competition takes place on the historic campus of the National University of Ireland in Maynooth, a picturesque university town on the outskirts of Dublin. The participation fee includes three nights’ accommodation, full board catering, a social and cultural programme and a gala ball!


Competition Overview

Participants will compete against each other in teams consisting of two persons (i.e. two teams, each consisting of two persons, compete against each other). In advance of the competition, each team will receive some mutual facts and some individual, confidential facts concerning a given case, in which they will represent one of the parties. Teams will be required to negotiate the resolution of an international dispute. The competition will take place across the weekend of 6 – 9 March 2020.



The winning team will be awarded €500.00, jointly. All participants will receive Certificates of Participation.


Why Negotiation?

Most disputes in which lawyers are involved do not end up in the courts. Instead, they are settled by way of some form of compromise between the parties - a negotiated agreement. In order to ensure that a client’s best interests are protected in the context of a negotiated, out-of-court agreement, it is imperative for lawyers to possess effective negotiation skills. This applies on both a national and an international level.

The International Negotiation Competition is designed to foster the skills of negotiation in students of law at an early stage in their careers and to provide the opportunity to gain first-hand negotiation experience!


Further Information

For further information, you can contact the Organising Committee via email: inc@ie.elsa.org. And to keep up to date with the competition as it progresses, like the negotiation competition Facebook page.

The purpose of the competition is to:

  1. Promote greater interest in and awareness of legal negotiation among law students;
  2. Provide a forum through which law students can learn the techniques of effective legal negotiation;
  3. Facilitate interaction between students from different countries and jurisdictions;
  4. Enable law students to learn to build strategies and use methods that will further enhance a client’s best interests; and
  5. Enable law students to enhance their existing negotiation skills.

Each judging panel will base its decisions on the following criteria:

  • the apparent level of structured negotiation preparation by each team
  • the team’s flexibility in diverging from plans or in adapting a strategy
  • how beneficial the negotiated result is to the clients’ interests and needs
  • effective teamwork
  • targeted communication skills
  • focus on long-term durable solutions
  • the relationship and interaction between the negotiating teams
  • ethics and poise / general demeanour
  • self-analysis
  • goal-oriented tactics

The competition is open to all current third-level law students, studying at either undergraduate or postgraduate* level. Both full-time and part-time students may apply.
Immediate graduates, or persons engaged in postgraduate practical legal training* are also eligible. A person whose last law graduation was more than twelve months prior to the application deadline is not eligible.
*Students enrolled in postgraduate study, such as a masters degree or practical legal training, are eligible, so long as they have not practised law (other than on a temporary basis or as part of an apprenticeship or an internship) between their initial and postgraduate studies. 

Each team must consist of two students, both of whom must complete the application form. The application form should be completed by 23:59 CET on Friday, 3 January 2020. Students need not be registered to or have graduated from the same university.

Apply here.

Team selection will be based upon English language proficiency, the team's motivation (as expressed through the application form), and any relevant experience. Non-ELSA members may apply, however, a reduced rate will apply for ELSA members.