InterJournal Complex Systems, 791
Status: Accepted
Manuscript Number: [791]
Submission Date: 2004
Patterns of Negotiation - A new way of looking at marketplace B2B Negotiations
Author(s): Suresh Sood ,Hugh Pattinson

Subject(s): CX.4



Traditionally, face to face negotiations in the real world have not been looked at as a complex systems interaction of actors that is dynamic and potentially emergent. If indeed negotiations are an outcome of a dynamic interaction of simpler behavior just as with a complex system we should be able to see the patterns contributing to the complexities of a negotiation under study. This paper and the supporting research sets out to show just this. This paper discusses the exploratory research based on negotiation simulations in which a large number of students were asked to participate as buyers and sellers. The student interactions were captured on video and a research method was conceived that attempted to look for patterns of interactions between actors using visualisation techniques used to observe complex systems algorithmic complexity. Students were videoed negotiating with each other. Each video was tagged according to a recognised classification and coding scheme for negotiations. The classifications related to the phases through which any particular negotiation might pass, such as laughter, then aggression, then compromise, and so on – through some 30 possible categories. A question of practical significance was: were negotiations more or less successful if they pathed or progressed through the alternatives in different ways? Furthermore, were there emergent pathing segments in the data that were more or less successful? This focus on emergence within the data provides further strong support for negotiations to be considered as complex systems.

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