"Northern Ireland: Contested Ground" Simulation

Northern Ireland: Contested Ground


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  • 5 roles
  • Role sheets included
  • Teams of 1 - 4 students per role (recommended)

Length of Simulation:

  • Flexible; Set by instructor

ICONSnet Features:
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  • Resources
  • Messages
  • My Team
  • Proposal Center

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Set in a small town in Northern Ireland, students portray local residents on a committee tasked with determining the location for a new technology training center in town. This simulation challenges students to negotiate in a contentious environment and build community in a region with a long history of religious and political tension. The promise brought to the town by the prospect of the new technology center project has rapidly been overshadowed by long-standing rivalries and the threat of violence from both sides. Together, the committee must try to devise a plan to move development of the center forward, while ensuring it benefits the entire town.

The simulation includes five roles, featuring members of the Town Council, clergy, and representatives of a local peace group. A scenario is provided along with a private role sheet to give students additional information about their assigned role's positions and interests. This simulation includes an opportunity for students to develop, debate, and vote on specific proposal plans to address the issues in the scenario.

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Technical Requirements

ICONSnet is optimized for display and use on desktop and laptop computers. Participants will need one or more Internet-connected computers or devices, and recent Web browser software. Recommended Web browsers include recent versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, or Internet Explorer (version 10 or above).

Note: Users of Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser are encouraged to upgrade to the most recent version of Internet Explorer (currently IE 11), available on the Microsoft Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 operating systems. Users of older Microsoft operating systems, e.g., Windows XP, are encouraged to use recent versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Opera.

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