Thirty-two Georgetown University – School of Foreign Service in Qatar (SFS-Qatar) students recently participated in a humanitarian-focused crisis simulation exercise at the Georgetown building on Qatar Foundation’s campus.
SFS-Qatar’s crisis simulations are based on a hypothetical situation relevant to a current international problem. During the process, students are assigned to teams and then special guests and faculty mentors lead the exercise. Participants read a background paper, receive the mock scenario, and then are instructed to follow the negotiating instructions.
The most recent simulation was set in the year 2015. During the simulation the students were responsible for facilitating the humanitarian response to Syria’s displaced population during an emerging peace process.
This allowed the simulation participants to gain experience in mock high-level negotiations between and among regional states, donor states, international humanitarian organizations, and post-conflict political entities.
Just as in real humanitarian crises, the negotiations were limited by the capacities and obligations of the international humanitarian organizations tasked with the safe return and reintegration of refugees and internally-displaced persons.
SFS-Qatar partners with Georgetown University’s Institute for the Study of Diplomacy to hold crisis simulations that expose Georgetown students to complex negotiations and real-time decision-making. The simulations complement the students’ studies at SFS-Qatar while providing teamwork experience during situations that necessitate high-stress thresholds.
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