Hostage negotiation

Readings: Volpe, M. R., & Cambria, J. J. (2006). Negotiation nimbleness: When cultural differences are unidentified. Rethinking Negotiation Teaching, 123. Culley, J LT (1974). Hostage Negotiations, in FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin October 1974 pp 10 to 14. Optional / Not Required: Cambria, J.J., DeFilippo, R.J., Louden, R.J., & McGowan, H. (2002). Negotiation under extreme pressure: The “mouth marines” and the hostage takers. Negotiation Journal, (18)4, 331-343. There is also a PPT for your review. The NYPD Hostage Negotiation Team (HNT) was the very first hostage team established in the United States. Soon after, the FBI followed suit, and today there are numerous hostage teams throughout the country, and the idea of hostage negotiation as a distinct concept is now commonly accepted. I had the honor and privilege of joining the HNT in 2002, and serving under Lt. Jack Cambria (Ret.) for his tenure as Commanding Officer. For this assignment, read Volpe & Cambria (2006) and Culley (1974). The reason I have included such a seemingly outdated reading from 1974 is to demonstrate that selection criteria for assignment to the HNT remains fairly consistent today to what it was in 1973 when the team was formed. NYPD negotiators assigned to the NYPD HNT are volunteers; that is, it is an additional responsibility that you take on in addition to your everyday responsibilities, without any additional compensation. They must submit an application, sit for an interview, and be approved by the Commanding Officer. After reading the articles, respond to the following: 1. There are four historical events that informed the NYPD’s decision to create a unit that is specifically designed to address hostage scenarios. They are in the posted power point. List the four events, and provide a brief description of the event. 2. Citing from both articles, explain the selection criteria for who can be on the NYPD’s HNT. Why do these criteria exist? That is, what do the selection criteria predict about an ability to successfully navigate hostage negotiations? What personality traits might be a good screen-in for assignment as a negotiator? 3. When negotiators are deployed, they are responding to a scene that is already-in-progress. HNT is the negotiation side of the response, while Emergency Services Unit (ESU) personnel are also deployed to the scene as the tactical side of the response. Sometimes, there can be friction when the mission of the tactical side (looking to breech the door and make a tactical entry) conflicts with the mission of the negotiation side (taking a “time is your friend” approach). HNT’s mission is to preserve life; and letting “time be your friend” helps this mission. Why do negotiators want to take time at a scene? As opposed to making a tactical entry, why do negotiators prefer a “Talk To Me” approach of letting the negotiation take as long as it needs to? 4. Volpe and Cambria explore what they call cultural nimbleness. In part they explain that “…negotiators will need to develop proficiency in managing situations where cultural concerns are pre-sent. We refer to this expertise as cultural nimbleness.” (p. 128) Why? Explain what the concept of cultural nimbleness is. Why is it necessary? How does it help a negotiation?

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