On Thursday 22nd March 2018, Forward Thinking facilitated a workshop in Nablus providing practical negotiation skills training to a cross-factional group of political leaders and academics from across the West Bank. The training was delivered by Dr Liz McClintock, a Founder and Managing Partner of CMPartners with 20 years of experience in negotiation, conflict management and leadership training. She has worked at the senior leadership level in a range of contexts, including Burundi, Nepal and Kashmir, and works closely with the Program on Negotiation at the Harvard Law School (PON).

The purpose of the workshop was to explore the skills most valuable to mid-level political leaders within the internal Palestinian political context, with a focus on how to negotiate and identify areas of sufficient consensus in the context of not only political and ideological difference, but also deep mistrust.

Dr McClintock used both theory and practical exercises to explore how to communicate effectively with one’s own constituency and across factions to enable tangible progress to be made in negotiations aimed at internal Palestinian unity. The workshop thus focused on responding to needs identified in roundtable discussions held in Hebron, Nablus and Ramallah over the last 16 months, in particular that mid-level political leaders desire change and cross-factional cooperation, yet lack the means to effectively work together and further reconciliation in light of the broader political context.