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Published: Dec 13 , 2018
Author: Robin Copland

Honestly. She is on a hiding to nothing. It is terribly easy to carp and criticise from the sidelines; especially when you don’t have to get out of bed and go to negotiate. As someone...

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Published: Aug 30 , 2018
Author: Robin Copland

The Caspian Sea is the sea that isn’t. It is landlocked and does not drain into the ocean, so it really should be called the Caspian Lake. Big lake, mind you, but there we are. The five countries surrounding the Sea, Azerbaijan, Iran, Turkmenistan, Russia and Kazahkstan have just recently signed a convention ending twenty years of dispute that has hindered the exploitation of the Caspian’s oil and gas reserves. Russia’s President Putin hailed the convention as “an important moment” and “a major landmark event for all our countries. “We have signed a convention on the legal status of the Caspian Sea. This is...

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Published: Dec 07 , 2017
Author: John McMillan

Two’s company; 27’s a crowd. It may be tricky negotiating with a single party, but when there are 27 divergent interests on the other side of the table it becomes even harder. That is just part of the challenge that the UK Government has in their Brexit negotiations. In most negotiations the negotiator is not negotiating for their own benefit; they almost always represent a coalition of interests. If that coalition is united in its mandate to the negotiator, then she or he may have very little room to manoeuvre. Any concession beyond the mandate will have to go back to the coalition for approval. However, if there is disunity amongst the coalition then the negotiator’s ability to make a deal is fatally flawed...

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Published: Oct 19 , 2017
Author: Stephen White

An interesting take on ‘bridging the gap’ came to my attention this week. The story has to be told anonymously because of client confidentiality, but the essence was a dispute over the amount of a pay-out between an insurance syndicate and a business owner after the business premises were destroyed by fire. Some of the facts surrounding the fire had made the insurers suspicious, although there was no hard evidence of fraud. Nevertheless, the insurers were reluctant to settle the claim which was close to €10 million,...

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Bad Behaviour (From The Good Guys)

I’m fascinated by how brands can make us feel. The intensity of that feeling, what drives it and how long it can last. The infamous ones in my experience include IKEA. Nothing makes my blood curdle more than the indignity of being herded around the labyrinth of their Wembley store, before you land in the cattle market of the queuing system. Great for your...

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