Back to Insights

The Most Famous Negotiations in History

The Scotwork Team


Negotiations have played a key role in shaping human civilisation. From resolving political conflicts to forging global agreements, negotiations can be seen throughout history.

This article will discuss some of the most famous negotiations in history, the strategies used, and the impact they have had on the world.


Brexit is one of the most significant negotiations of recent times and saw the United Kingdom (UK) vote to leave the European Union (EU) in June 2016. The pro-Brexit campaign aimed to convince people that the UK would be in a stronger position if it left the EU and regained control of its own laws and borders.


The Negotiations Around Brexit 

The negotiations surrounding the Brexit deal were complex and had long-term implications for both the UK and the rest of the EU. The negotiations have also been felt across the globe, with the Brexit deal impacting international trade and various economic matters.


The UK officially left the EU in January 2020. Brexit highlights the challenges of removing a nation from a complex ecosystem of economic, political and legal agreements. The full impact of Brexit is not yet known as we continue to navigate the transition post-Brexit.

Paris Climate Accord

The Paris Climate Accord is one of the largest negotiations in history, with 196 countries joining forces to help fight climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.


The negotiations were intricate and took place at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21) in Paris on the 12th of December 2015. After two weeks of in-depth discussions, all countries agreed to sign the Paris Agreement which is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. The goal of the treaty, which came into force on the 4th of November 2016, is “to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.”

The Negotiations Around The Accord 

This negotiation demonstrates how multilateral development cooperation is essential when handling global issues like climate change.

Treaty of Versailles

The Treaty of Versailles was a negotiation that was finalised in Paris in 1919 and ended World War I. The overarching goal of the negotiations was to establish peace and hold Germany accountable for its role in the war.


The signed treaty imposed harsh penalties on Germany, forcing them to accept responsibility for losses caused by the war and imposing harsh financial repercussions. The treaty also redrew borders throughout Europe and created new nations including Finland and Austria.

The Negotiations Around The Treaty of Versailles 

While the treaty aimed to prevent future wars, many people believe that the severe terms created tension in Germany which contributed to World War II.


The main lesson we can learn from The Treaty of Versailles is the importance of striking a balance between justice and fairness and considering the long-term impact on future generations.

Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT I & II)

The United States and the Soviet Union took part in two negotiations known as the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT I & II) during the Cold War. The goal of the negotiations was to reduce the risk of nuclear conflict by limiting the spread of nuclear weapons and creating greater transparency.

The Negotiations Around The Arms Limitation 

The first negotiation (SALT I)  was signed in 1972 and resulted in the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty and the Interim Agreement on the Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms. SALT II was signed in 1979 with the goal of further limiting the number of nuclear weapons that could be manufactured and sold.


These negotiations marked a key milestone in the efforts to de-escalate tensions between the dominant nations and prevent a devastating nuclear war.

Final Thoughts

Each of these famous negotiations has had a lasting impact on the world we live in today. While different, they highlight the importance of communication, compromise and cooperation when resolving global issues and other conflicts.

We can learn a lot from the successes and failures of these negotiations and apply their tactics to achieve positive outcomes in our own lives. If you are looking for negotiation training delivered by negotiation experts, reach out to our team at Scotwork UK and improve your negotiation skills. 

Subscribe to our Blog

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply. We value your privacy. For more information please refer to our Privacy Policy.