International Negotiation Workshop with the University of Virginia Law School

Teaching students to be transactional lawyers requires innovation. How to bring the deal into the classroom?

Merging technology and legal education thereby pushing the boundaries of traditional legal teaching methods is exactly what Bucerius Law School have embarked upon by collaborating with the University of Virginia Law School in an extended cross-border negotiation simulation exercise.

Students negotiate and structure an international business transaction, either a joint venture, licence agreement, or supply agreement, using live videoconferencing, as well as written communications to finalise a letter of intent between a U.S. multinational pharmaceutical corporation and a company in a developing African nation.

This practical skills course affords students the opportunity to learn how lawyers translate business concepts into legal agreements that meet their clients’ objectives, experience the cross-cultural aspects of working cross-border, while honing their negotiating skills. For the educators it is a chance to pool resources, as the course is collaboratively taught in English by Lezel Crook (Director Foreign Language Communication at Bucerius Law School) and Dr. Carsten van de Sande (Partner at Hengeler Mueller, Weitzel, Wirtz in Frankfurt) under Professor Thorn’s Chair of Civil Law, Private International and International Commercial Law, and Comparative Law.

The course, developed by Jay Finkelstein and Daniel Bradlow, has been taught at leading American universities over the past ten years and was highly recommended by Corinna Coupette (Bucerius Law School class of 2010) who participated in the course at Stanford University while on her exchange trimester abroad.


Lezel Crook, Director Foreign Language Communication Programme