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Everything else in our lives has changed. What about negotiation?

PCDN Global

February 13, 2017

I’ve just shared a new article, Negotiation is Changing, on SSRN. If you negotiate regularly, or teach or research negotiation, you may enjoy taking a look at it.

Over the past couple of decades, we have changed in so many ways. Think about the significant shifts in how you spend your time, interact with others, conduct your business, and engage with friends. Most of the changes are a result of the technological upheavals of our age. Our very bodies – especially, our brains, are changing, due to our immersion in a technological world.

Have we changed, though, as negotiators? Has anything fundamental changed, regarding negotiation itself? Reviewing the negotiation literature, the answer is no. Sure - we negotiate over new platforms, and must tweak our actions to cope with the effects of each medium. Negotiation itself, though, is not in flux, and neither are negotiators.

This article suggests that we are changing as negotiators, and that core elements of negotiation itself are shifting. This change is inevitable, given the broader social, transactional and interactional changes the world is undergoing. It stands to reason, that such changes affect activities that overlap and juxtapose with negotiation, including mediation and conflict. The paper makes suggestions for how negotiators and the negotiation field might cope with the notion of change.

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