An outbreak of a deadly infectious disease, the Anthella virus, has spread throughout the world population. Scientists everywhere are rushing to find a cure.
Experts working at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, have succeeded in developing three doses of an antidote that cures victims of the Anthella virus. Given the rapid spread of the Anthella virus, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved dispensing the drug without the traditional rounds of clinical testing. Seven individuals inflicted with Anthella have qualified as candidates for the drug trial.
Participants play the roles of prominent attorneys serving on a special committee appointed by the President of the United States and the Director of the CDC to ensure transparency in allocating scarce resources in times of national health crises and disasters. First, participants decide which three candidates they personally want to save. Then, in committee, participants must agree upon which three of the seven candidates should receive the life-saving doses. The four who are not selected will go untreated. If the committee fails to reach a unanimous decision within the allotted time, the drug’s efficacy will expire and none of the candidates will receive treatment.
The hypothetical Drug Trial Committee role play introduces students to the dynamics of a multiparty negotiation. The ideal group size is five participants, but the case is manageable with 4 to 6 participants or larger-sized groups. For a robust debrief, it is preferable to have at least 4 different groups negotiating the case. It is suggested that instructors allot 30 minutes for the negotiation and 25 minutes for debriefing.
This product includes General Instructions for all participants. There is a teaching note available for this product.
This case provides an introduction to thinking about the process of group decision making. Students will learn:
- To gain experience negotiating a process for reaching a group decision;
- To recognize the range of possible group decision rules and their impact on the substantive outcome of a negotiation;
- To question the underlying assumptions that influence decision making;
- To highlight the presence of narratives, stories, and perceptions in group decision making processes;
- To understand the impact of potential spoilers and spoiler behavior;
- To explore the impact of action-forcing events and deadlines on group decision making;
- To demonstrate the challenges of developing criteria against the backdrop of different kinds of information and participants’ differing or competing value systems.
Negotiation Simulation; Multiparty Negotiation Process and Strategy; Competing Value Systems; Public Health; Infectious Disease
Geographic: United States
Industry: Public Health
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