IV. Establish Equity


In this phase, dialogs between all parties are recorded . However, only screen shots from Syria’s private point of view are shown.

Facilitator: In our experience, negotiations with Smartsettle are most successful for all concerned if all parties begin with initial proposals that are optimistic.Our objective in this phase is to identify a package that both parties believe would divide benefits fairly. This will become a tentative solution from which to generate improvements.

Syria: Since building a park together in the Golan Heights was our idea, we will start. Please look for a proposal in the Smartsettle interface named Syria 1. As encouraged by the facilitator, we have set the issues in this proposal to a combination of values that would give us an optimistic level of satisfaction and we are willing to be flexible as we search together for a solution that would also satisfy Israel.

Israel: We have responded in like manner with a proposal named Israel 1.

Figure 6 Optimistic Opening Proposals

In the left pane are displayed the issue values of opening proposals from each party. In the right pane, in the Proposals group, there are red check marks beside the names of these two displayed packages. Since this screen is seen from Syria’s point of view, all package ratings are in terms of satisfaction to Syria. Syria’s proposal is worth 4323, while the Israel’s proposal is worth only 656, not even as much as Syria’s Walkaway package, worth 1099.

Syria: I am impressed with the progress we have made during these negotiations and we have certainly appreciated the concessions that you have made since your opening proposal. We consider our concessions to also have been very substantial. We hope that you are able to accept our current proposal now as the final solution. Our decision-makers believe that this would be a very fair solution.

Israel: We also have a proposal on the table that we think would be fair for everyone.

Facilitator: I perceive that parties have reached a point where they each feel very strongly that their last proposal is the fair solution that should be implemented.

Figure 7 Impasse

The last proposals from each party, named Syria 9 and Israel 9, are being displayed here (others are hidden). To Syria, these packages are worth 2610 and 2425 respectively. These ratings are still much higher than Syria’s Walkaway level of 1099. However, due to perceptions of fairness, Syria is reluctant to concede further and Israel has stated that they are in the same position.

Facilitator: May I suggest that we give Smartsettle a chance to resolve this apparent impasse.

Syria: We are willing to consider other packages but they must be at least as satisfactory as what we have proposed.

Israel: We are in the same position.

Facilitator: Very well. Smartsettle has generated another new equivalent package. May I encourage each of you to carefully consider this package for possible acceptance.

Figure 8 Equivalent Package

Smartsettle has generated a package named Equivalent 5. Equivalent 5 is being compared in the left pane to the last proposal from Syria. The newly generated package has a rating of 2600, which is very close to the rating of Syria 9. If Syria’s preferences are well represented by Smartsettle, a logical decision would be to accept this package. Smartsettle lists the new equivalent package in a group named Possibly Published. The meaning of “Possibly Published” is that parties cannot be sure that Smartsettle has actually solved their impasse by finding a package that solves the impasse, i.e., the package named Equivalent 5 that Syria sees may not be the same package that Israel sees. In fact, there were several other “equivalents” (not shown) generated previous to this one that were either not acceptable or not actually published.

Syria: (in private to Facilitator) We have really appreciated the degree to which we have been able to be in control of the process. For example, there is no pressure to move in a particular direction on any one issue and if a package is presented that we don’t like, we can simply ignore it. However, we have been pleasantly surprised with the latest results. We have reviewed the newly generated package and find it acceptable.

Facilitator: You may then accept the package in the Smartsettle interface. Israel will not become aware of your acceptance of any package unless they also accept the identical package.

Figure 9 Tentative Solution

Smartsettle declares a tentative solution after both parties have accepted the package that Smartsettle has suggested as a solution to the impasse. In the left pane, the tentative solution is being compared to Syria’s last proposal.

Facilitator: Congratulations! Israel and Syria have reached a tentative agreement.

Israel: We are very pleased with this outcome. We have reached a solution that gives Israel as much satisfaction as what we wanted when we were stuck at impasse.

Syria: We can say the same for Syria.

  • Next: V. Maximize Benefits