NCMR, 12(1), Article Abstracts

NCMR’s First Decade: An Empirical Examination

Gross, M. A., Neuman, E. J., Adair, W. L., Wallace, M. (2018). NCMR’s First Decade: An Empirical Examination. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research. (12), 1, 3-22.

This article offers an empirical review of Negotiation and Conflict Management Research’s (NCMR) first 10 years. The editorial team takes a data focused approach in examining and documenting the diversity and scope of the 196 articles published in the journal thus far. To do this, diversity of special issues, authors, keywords, and citations were examined. Further, number of citations and references were analyzed to understand the relative impact of the articles.

Special issues have been an important part of NCMR by offering inspirations for new avenues of research. In the first 10 years, 12 special issues have been published ranging from topics of negotiation, gender, power, justice and conflict. Special issues in this journal largely focus on topics that the editorial team wishes to bring additional insight to and encourage new direction and perspectives.

Author demographics such as gender, job rank, geographic location and discipline were examined to better understand the diversity in contribution to articles.  This section focused on first authors of articles to allow for reasonable and attainable results. Females represented 58.7% of first authors while males represented 41.3%, showcasing a healthy balance between genders. A review of job rank found that the largest percentage (52.7%) of first authors were considered senior or mid-level professors. Junior level professors and PhD students also represented a strong portion at 33.7% of first authors. The remaining 13.6% of authors represent a range of backgrounds such as non tenure faculty. Geographic location based on employment was also examined to find 59.8% of first authors were employed in the United States, 20.1% in Europe, and the remaining 20.1% were employed between Non- US America’s, Australia, Southeast Asia, and Africa. Lastly, academic disciplines of first authors were examined with management and psychology representing roughly two-thirds. The other third was spread among a variety of disciplines such as communication, interdisciplinary programs, and public affairs.

Next, the editorial team considered the content of the articles by analyzing keywords. Since keywords of articles are chosen independently by the authors, the editorial team consolidated a list to combined nearly identical keywords used by different authors. This resulted in a unique list of 485 keywords, of which the top 10 most frequency used were analyzed further. Not surprisingly, “negotiation” and “conflict” were the most commonly used terms, followed by “culture”, “emotion”, “gender”, and “mediation”. It was also noted that while these terms were frequently used, 30.4% of articles did not use any of the top 10 keywords. This illustrating the wide distribution of topics covered in NCMR.

Content of the articles was further analyzed by creating networks to understand the relationships between keywords and how closely related articles in NCMR are connected. Findings showed that there is a 1.3% chance of two articles chosen at random sharing two or more keywords. Further, it was found that 47.8% of articles did not share at least two keywords with any other article. These surprising results allowed the editorial team to understand areas of opportunity for future research topics. To take the network analysis further, article citations were examined to recognize the relationship of articles based on their references and sources of information. Similar results illustrated a vast range of references used between articles.

After internally examining the diversity of content offered in NCMR’s articles, the editorial team examined the articles external impact. Citation count was used as the measurement for impact and the top 10 most cited articles were analyzed. Most apparent was the amount of diversity offered from author, to publication date, to article topic, article type, and methodological approach used in each paper.

A thorough examination of contributors, content, and impact of NCMR’s first 10 years of articles revealed the diversity and scope of the journal. It also produced several surprising results that allowed for reflection and gave insight for future avenues of research that will support continued growth and development of the journal. Looking forward, social changes and technological advances have given the editorial team additional inspiration for new areas of research. This article both celebrates the accomplishments of NCMR’s first decade and provides inspiration for the future of the journal.

Diplomatic Chameleons: Language Style Matching and Agreement in International Diplomatic Negotiations

Bayram, A. B., Ta, V. P. (2018). Diplomatic Chameleons: Language Style Matching and Agreement in International Diplomatic Negotiations. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, (12)1, 23-40.

Researchers have explored different factors that impact the outcomes and successes of negotiations. Thus far, three main focus areas have emerged that can be attributed to the outcome of negotiations: the environment and structure of the negotiation, the process itself, and psychological factors. This essay looks to extend this area of research by examining the impacts of language style matching (LSM) as a factor. Specifically, it examines LSM in the context of international diplomatic negotiations. This article proposes and tests a hypothesis, analyzes the results, and offers suggestions for future research.

Language style matching is a term used to describe the extent to which individuals match linguistic styles while communicating. LSM focuses on how individuals express an idea. This aspect of communication can impact social relationships and feelings. Research has also found that language style matching can encourage agreements in negotiations. The authors apply this knowledge to their research by hypothesizing that a higher degree of language style matching will be found in negotiations that end in an agreement as compared to negotiations that do not end in an agreement.

To test this hypothesis, manuscripts from the 2002-2003 Constitutional Convention on the Future of the European Union were analyzed. This study was chosen because of the scope of parties involved and the range of native languages spoken. Representatives at this convention consisted of a broad range of different types of diplomatic agents presenting issues in their native language. Specifically, two topics of debate from the convention were analyzed: the Legal personality of the Union which resulted in agreement, and qualified majority voting which resulted in no agreement.

These manuscripts were run through a text analysis program, Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count. Content words and function words were picked out and examined further. Content words refer to the ideas and experiences of the speech. These are often expressed in the nouns and verbs of the sentence. Function words refer to the more subtle differences in individual’s language that are often used without thought and therefore harder to copy. Function words often do not have meaning of their own outside of the sentence such as pronouns, conjunctions, and prepositions. Therefore, researchers can use function words as an indicator of language style matching by focusing on the more subtle and hard to mimic aspects of communication.

The analysis of these words provided useful insight on the topic. There were found to be a higher degree of language style matching in the debates over Legal personality and a lower degree of language style matching in the debates over qualified majority voting. This was supported by the analysis done on both content words and function words. The results of this test supported the hypothesis. While there are numerous factors that impact negotiations such as political, cultural, and psychological implications, the results from this study show language style matching to also be an important dynamic in the outcome of negotiations.

This study provides a new narrative to the discussion of impacts on successful negotiations and works to build a better understanding of the dynamics involved in international diplomatic negotiations. It sets a foundation for additional research on the topic. Suggestions for continued research include exploring the relative impact of the different factors or examining the relationship between LSM and negotiation strategies.

From “Sad People on Bridges” to “Kidnap and Extortion”: Understanding the Nature and Situational Characteristics of Hostage and Crisis Negotiator Deployments

Grubb, A. R., Brown, S. J, Hall, P., Bowen, E. (2018). From “Sad People on Bridges” to “Kidnap and Extortion”: Understanding the Nature and Situational Characteristics of Hostage and Crisis Negotiator Deployments. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, 12(1), 41-65.

Hostage and crisis negotiation (HCN) has been proven as an effective tool that can be used to facilitate successful outcomes in high stake cases. HCN can be applied to a variety of situations that require skilled police officers to diffuse and resolve high stress crisis and hostage events. Such events range from dealing with suicidal individuals to kidnapping and extortion. Significant research has centered on this topic, offered from a vast range of perspectives and investigated from various countries. Factors influencing these scenarios have largely been examined in the United States or from a cross-cultural approach.

Thus far, no body of research has solely examined hostage and crisis negotiation deployment in the United Kingdom. This article pursues this narrative by taking a qualitative approach in examining hostage and crisis situations that have occurred in the United Kingdom. To do this, interviews were conducted with negotiators from different police forces across the United Kingdom. The interviews were then analyzed and 12 categories of deployment were formed. This article breaks down these 12 types of crisis and hostage deployments and provides practical applications for the findings.

First, the police participants were carefully selected to represent different demographics from various police forces in England. This allowed for a wide range of perspectives and experiences to be captured in the study. The 15 participants completed semi structured interviews with a focus on HCN deployments. The interviews were recorded and transcripts were created for coding and further analysis. The various HCN deployments discussed in the interviews were able to be categorized as 12 distinct deployment situations based on consistent themes between scenarios discussed.

The first category of deployments fall under crisis negotiations, which represented a majority of the deployments. These can either be planned or spontaneous deployments. There were two categories of planned crisis negotiations: provision of tactical operational support and protest or demonstration management. Provision of tactical operational support refers to a situation in which the police receive information that a person could pose a threat and work to facilitate an arrest before having to result to tactical force. Protest and demonstration management refers to the pro-active involvement of police in order to avoid the escalation of public protests or demonstrations.

Spontaneous deployments, on the other hand, represent a much larger portion of crisis negotiations with five different categories. The first category, suicide intervention, represents the most frequent of all deployment types encountered. The second category, mental health or substance abuse precipitated crisis, was found to be another common reason for deployment which involves individuals experiencing crisis brought on by drugs or mental health issues. The third category, high-risk missing persons, generally involves youths running away from home. The fourth category, criminal evading apprehension, often times involves individuals trying to evade arrest by barricading themselves in a building. The fifth category, dwelling-based barricade (without victims), is often triggered by domestic disputes that have escalated to an individual barricading themselves in a building and posing harm to themselves but not to the victim.

The second main category of deployment falls under hostage negotiations, which were found to occur much less frequently. These types of deployments can either be overt or covert. Overt negotiations refer to situations that are handled openly and with communication directly between the police negotiators and the subject. Overt negotiations can be further defined by two categories. The first category, hostage-taking, refers to situations where an individual is taken against their will and held hostage. The second category, domestic siege (involving victims), refers to a situation where an individual has been prevented from leaving a building, generally due to a domestic dispute. As defined by this study, victims are distinguished from hostages because hostages are generally used as a means to obtain a demand or ransom while victims are not.

Covert negotiations, on the other hand, refer to situations where the subject is not aware of police involvement in the situation. Instead, communication is generally between the subject and the family of the victim or hostage. In these scenarios, police negotiators often have to provide coaching to the third party to ensure they communicate with the subject in a way that does not imply police involvement. Covert negotiations can be further defined by three distinct categories. The first category, kidnap and extortion, refers to situations where an individual has been taken hostage. The second category, pseudo-kidnapping, refers to a situation that generally involves one criminal kidnapping another criminal. The third category, extortion, generally refers to a situation where money is exchanged due to threat or force.

These 12 categories of HCN deployment represent a wide range of scenarios that police force must be equipped to handle. This article proposes practical applications for these findings. First, the findings can be used to educate and train police forces. Additionally, the findings can help to allocate resources towards deployments that occur most frequently, such as suicide intervention. Further, this study provides a foundation for continued empirical research and therefore suggests a deployment reporting system be utilized in the future to allow for the collection of consistent data that can then be used for continued research on the topic.

The Role of Experts and Scholars in Community Conflict Resolution: A Comparative Analysis of Two Cases in China

Yang, L. (2018). The Role of Experts and Scholars in Community Conflict Resolution: A Comparative Analysis of Two Cases in China. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, 12(1), 66-88.

China, a strong government society, has experienced rapid economic development in recent years. This has led to an increase in social conflicts in the country. This article seeks to explore the different roles of parties involved in community conflict in China. Specifically, it looks at the impact experts and scholars can have on the success of conflict resolution. This article analyzes two case studies in China, one with a positive outcome and one without a positive outcome to determine the influence of third party actors.

With China’s long history of strong social government, experts and scholars (ES) have traditionally played a crucial role in conflict resolution. ES are defined in this article as individuals with extended knowledge as compared to other parties involved in the situation. In this context, ES represent a third party to a conflict and can grouped as local ES who have a personal connection to the other parties involved, or as non local ES who are often not tied to the local community involved. Further, ES are generally perceived as having some degree of social capital such as prestige, status, trust, or valued relationships. To best understand their role and impact on conflict resolution, two cases with distinct similarities and differences were analyzed.

First, the case of Taishi Village was studied by reviewing eight interviews as well as articles and other relevant documents. This case involved farmers and government officials of a local village over the issue of land use. Taishi Villagers found reserved land being used for factory construction and after their concerns over the issue were ignored, they petitioned for the removal of the Village Committee. This produced push back from the local government. Non local ES from various backgrounds took interest in the conflict and became involved which escalated the issue. This led to increased tensions, decreased trust, and complicated the issues at hand; ultimately resulting in a disadvantaged outcome for the villagers.

Next, the case of Gaolaiwang Village was studied by reviewing over 30 interviews with local villagers and two ES that were involved. Similarly, this case involved local villagers and local government over the issue of land use. Conversely, the ES involved in this case were local to the community and had grown up in the village before leaving for university. The ES had a level of trust with the locals and a personal stake in the situation unlike the previous case. The ES were able to provide cooperative strategies and advice to the locals while working with officials and demonstrating an understanding of their point of view. In the end, the ES were able to facilitate a compromise between the villagers and the local government. This resulted in a much more successful outcome for both sides, as compared to the first case.

Comparing these two cases allowed for a discussion over both the similarities and differences, as highlighted by the overall success of the outcome. A significant difference was the role of the ES. Researchers have found that ES can be divided into four main roles. They can provide information, act as leaders or organizers for the villagers, act as agents for the government, or pursue an agenda for self-interest. In the Taishi Village case, the ES had lower levels of social capital related to trust and personal stake in the conflict. This resulted in the ES acting solely as information providers and in self-interest. In the Gaolaiwang Village case, the ES were locals which provided them with a significantly higher level of trust with both the local villagers and government. Their role to both parties was as information providers, as well as leaders to the villagers and agents to the government. Additionally, the ES were also able to pursue their own self-interest through gaining prestige through their contributions.

This article provides a new perspective to the role of ES in social conflict resolution. ES with high social capital, such as trust, are often able to act in all four roles, while ES with low social capital, are more likely to act only as information providers and self-interest pursuers. Higher levels of social capital can often be linked to ES that are local to the community as opposed to non-locals who do not have the same level of trust and prestige with the parties involved. Therefore, it was found that ES with high social capital are more likely to resolve conflicts that benefit both parties. Further, this shows that expert knowledge in itself is only part of what makes an ES relevant to successful conflict resolution.

Morton Deutsch: Celebrating His Theorizing and Research

Johnson, D. W., Johnson, R. T., Tjosvold, D., Roseth, C. J., (2018). Morton Deutsch: Celebrating His Theorizing and Research. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, (12)1, 89-102.

Morton Deutsch has played an instrumental role in social psychological. His extensive theory and research on various topics has greatly influenced the field in a vast range of applications. This article celebrates his influential work and discusses his contributions over the years. Each author offers their own perspective on his legacy, highlighting four main areas of contributions: development of theory, innovations in research, cross-cultural implications, and cross-species applications.

As discussed by David W. Johnson, Morton Deutsch had an extensive and dynamic career. His contributions to social psychology ranged from his theory on cooperation and competition, trust and conflict, distributive justice, oppression, and beyond. Pulling from his experiences in World War II, Morton developed his first theory of cooperation and competition in the late 1940’s with a focus on goal interdependence. He continued to develop and extend this theory through the 1960’s, adding trust and conflict resolution as important elements. In the 1970’s his focus moved to distributive justice and in the 1980’s extended his focus further by developing theory on oppression. His contributions over the years extended to a vast range of topics that could be applied on a multitude of levels. The theory could be applied on the individual, group, organizational, cultural, or even international level.

Throughout his career, Morton focused heavily on experimental studies. He was careful in his interpretations of data and provided implications for the findings. As discussed by Roger Johnson, Morton was an incredibly creative and innovative researcher. He regularly studied complex issues through use of games and experiments. Morton was noted as the first social psychologist to use the prisoner’s dilemma, a game that could be used to examine the complexities of trust. Prisoner’s dilemma has since been used in numerous research, showcasing his ability as a pioneer in the field. Beyond his role as a researcher, Roger emphasized the meaningful life Morton had outside of his career. Morton and his wife enjoyed traveling to France and spending time together at their beach house.

As discussed by Dean Tjosvold, another important aspect of Morton’s research is that it can be applied cross-culturally. Dean Tjosvold and his colleagues have applied much of Morton’s theories in business settings in China. This application was examined from several perspectives to better understand the relative use of the theories in China. Findings supported the validity of Morton’s theories in China, further showcasing the versatility of his work. Aside from his cross-cultural contributions, Dean also noted Morton’s dedication to his career and his professional work ethic. Morton expressed the importance of hard work to his students, while always leading by example through his daily work in the office and classroom.

Morton’s work can further be applied when examining cross-species applications. As discussed by Cary Roseth, Morton’s theory provides a perspective on cooperative and competitive behaviors of various species and how those behaviors have impacted evolutionary processes. Morton’s theory stresses the importance of cooperation, over competition, for the long term survival of many species. Several bodies of research support this theory. Living in groups, for example, where members of a group benefit from living together and are often times all committed to a common goal. Inclusive fitness also supports his theory, which occurs when members of a group cooperate to ensure the survival of their genes in the future. Bees are a common example of this, where a bee is willing to die to protect the queen bee, thus allowing their genes to continue on when the queen reproduces. Another important tool for cooperation is reconciliation, which has been documented in 27 different species. Reconciliation is used to help balance cooperation and competition, as species are bound to experience both. All this, further confirming the scope of impact Morton’s work has across various fields.

As noted by all the authors, Morton was an innovative and remarkable researcher and theorist. He had an extensive and dynamic career based in experimental studies. His contributions to social psychology can be applied on multilevel, across cultures and across species. He was an inspirational professor, mentor, colleague, and friend.