LAW5429 - Advanced commercial negotiation skills - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Quota applies

Postgraduate programs are based on a model of small group teaching and therefore class sizes need to be restricted.

Not offered in 2017


For postgraduate Law discontinuation dates, please see

For postgraduate Law unit timetables, please see

Previously coded as LAW7493


This unit is designed for students with existing knowledge and experience of negotiation, although no specific units have been set as pre-requisites. It focuses specifically on commercial negotiations (understood broadly to encompass pre-contract and contract negotiations, management of issues in the life of a commercial relationship, and the negotiated resolution of commercial disputes), although many of the concepts and skills are also relevant to negotiation in other fields of practice.

Topics covered will include: the procedural challenges associated with specific types of negotiation; agency tensions for lawyers working in commercial contexts; whether "relationships" matter in a field focused strongly on financial interests; designing deals for maximum value; managing the negotiation process "at the table"; strategic preparation and moves "away from the table" to set up the best conditions for negotiation; cross-border negotiations; multiparty dynamics and other challenges arising from specific types of negotiation; ethics in commercial negotiations; and the impact of the legal system on commercial negotiation (and vice versa).

The unit will be delivered in a highly interactive fashion, and will explore issues and develop skills using negotiation role-plays, small group exercises and and full-class discussions, building on themes introduced through interactive lectures, guest lectures and audio-visual input.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  • Apply advanced knowledge and understanding of negotiation in commercial contexts and advanced skills for dealing with challenges in commercial negotiations with creativity and initiative to new situations in professional practice;
  • Investigate, analyse and synthesise complex information, problems, concepts and theories in relation to advanced commercial negotiation;
  • Conduct research in advanced commercial negotiation based on knowledge of appropriate research principles and methods; and
  • Use cognitive, technical and creative skills to generate and evaluate at an abstract level complex critical issues and major trends in the theory and practice of commercial negotiation.


One research assignment (3,750 words): 50%

One take-home examination (3,750 words): 50%

Workload requirements

Students enrolled in this unit will be provided with 24 contact hours of seminars per semester whether intensive, semi-intensive, or semester-long offering. Students will be expected to do reading set for class, and to undertake additional research and reading applicable to a 6 credit point unit.

Chief examiner(s)