Conflict simulation, peacebuilding, and development

Daily Archives: 05/02/2009

Carana in Tunis 2

Three new universes were spun off of Carana this week in Tunis for our regional training course.  Once the participants were assigned and prepared for their roles, they got into the simulation quite quickly.   I was really happily surprised by how well the simulation was received – we had essentially no resistance to using the simulation as a training tool and final responses were quite positive.

Indeed, all three simulations went very smoothly, a little too smoothly, observers suggested that more pressing time constraints, urgent matters that require resolution from principal actors (did someone say mini-games/plot twists?) and some deadlines for resolving crises would contribute to more of a post-conflict environment.  I agree, the performance has been pretty good, we’ll need to start ratcheting up the difficulty and the pressure on participants – I don’t need sound effects, explosions in the hallway and I don’t expect to be ordering bulk fake blood any time soon, but these suggestions are good ones to really start delivering the experience.

A nod to Rex and our conversations about his simulations as well for inspiring a new innovation in Carana.   We asked two experts that were observing the course to take the role of “Press” – preparing some difficult questions for the teams to push them on their action plans and presentations and otherwise being meddlesome.  By the end of the simulation they were in the storyline – the journalists were kidnapped in one Carana and one of the journalists was arrested in the other.  More evidence of the power of the press in simulations.

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