Handbook of Research on Negotiation
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Handbook of Research on Negotiation

Edited by Mara Olekalns and Wendi L. Adair

Leading international scholars give insight into both the factors known to shape negotiation and the questions that we need to answer as we strive to deepen our understanding of the negotiation process. This Handbook provides analyses of the negotiation process from four distinct perspectives: negotiators’ cognition and emotion, social processes and social inferences, communication processes, and complex negotiations, covering trade, peace, environment, and crisis negotiations.
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Chapter 7: Trust and negotiation

Roy J. Lewicki and Beth Polin


Trust is an inherent part of the negotiation context. Parties engage in a negotiation because they have each decided that they are dependent on the other to provide something—particularly the exchange of accurate information and the willingness to implement their agreement—that will improve their current situation and enable them to negotiate successfully. It is because of this very interdependence that trust—which is about risk in and of itself—or distrust will develop between negotiating parties. Therefore, trust, distrust, interdependence, and information sharing are integral to the negotiation process itself and to its ultimate success or failure. The ubiquitous nature of trust in the negotiation context makes this chapter a necessity in a negotiation handbook such as this. We have taken a unique approach to the design of this chapter by summarizing research around ten commonly asked questions about trust in the context of negotiation. We believe this is a simple, direct way of presenting a comprehensive overview of how and why trust is important to include in any discussion about negotiation.

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