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Mercedes Costa


Mercedes Costa

In 1998, Mercedes Costa launched the IE Business School’s Centre for Negotiation and Mediation (Centro de Negociación y Mediación), of which she is currently the director. This is a pioneering project in this field, which has made it possible to offer the subject on all postgraduate programs at our Business School.

Costa started out in this area with the prestigious Program on Negotiation at the Harvard Law School, run by Roger Fisher, who supported her in launching the Centre at which she is now the director. She would subsequently continue to gain experience in this subject under the guidance of Frank Sander, William Ury and Bruce Patton.

In Costa’s own words: “in order for so complex and uncertain a process as negotiation to reach a satisfactory conclusion, a methodology is called for that structures the negotiator’s behaviour and lends it foresight and control.”

She continues: “What sets us apart is that we understand that the negotiation process yields a benefit of its own. In recent years, we have worked within a single framework which, on the one hand, makes the results-oriented task as efficient as possible and, on the other, optimises the possibilities of mutual knowledge, the creation of value, and ethical and personal growth at the negotiations table.”

A graduate in Law from the Central University of Barcelona, Costa spent ten years working in the commercial law department at José Mario Armero’s practice, dealing with all sorts of corporate transactions, such as increases in capital, mergers, acquisitions, sponsorship and advertising contracts and so on. “If in my degree they’d taught me how to prepare negotiations effectively they would have saved me a lot of bother,” she admits. Costa also has a Master’s degree in Corporate Legal Consultancy from the IE Business School.

A regular collaborator in Spain’s major media channels, she has written numerous working papers, technical notes and research case studies on negotiation. She is the editor and co-author of the book “Negociar para CON-vencer”, published by McGraw Hill in November 2004, of which there have been numerous editions, most recently in 2020, and “Negociar para CON-seguir”, published by Pearson in 2011. In addition, she is the author of the chapter titled “La Negociación” (“Negotiation”) in the manual “Sistemas de Solución Extrajudicial de Conflictos” (“Systems for the Out-of-Court Settlement of Disputes”, edited by Professor Hinojosa Segovia and published in July 2006 by Ramón Areces University Press. Her most recent manual, “El Negociador Efectivo” (“The Effective Negotiator”), published by LID in September 2017, contains a practical guide to enable negotiators to turn their interactions with opposite numbers into an efficient tool in the negotiations process.


• Doctoral Program “Culture and communication for the information society”, IE University
• Diploma in the Advanced Negotiation Workshop from the Harvard Law School
• Diploma in the Mediation Workshop from the Harvard Law School
• Diploma in the Workshop on Negotiation from the Harvard Law School
• Master’s degree in Corporate Legal Consultancy from the IE Business School
• Law degree from the Central University of Barcelona

Work Experience

• Chair of the Audit and Compliance Committee at Ebro Foods (November 2018-present)
• Coordinating Director at Ebro Foods (November 2018-present)
• Director at Ebro Foods, S.A. (2016- 2018)Ç
• Director of the Centre for Negotiation and Mediation at the IE Business School (1998-present).
• Lecturer on negotiation at the IE Business School (1998-present)
• Lecturer on security in legal transactions (1989-1995)
• Commercial lawyer at José Mario Armero & Cia. (1989-1999)

Teaching and Research Experience

• Lecturer on Negotiation at the IE Business School (1998-present).
• Author of the book “El Negociador efectivo: comunicación persuasiva con técnicas de mindfulness” (LID, 2017)