chapter  1
19 Pages

The study of negotiation

Considering the length of time that states have bargained with each other, it is surprising that there has been so little analysis of the process of negotiation. Lately, however, there has been a sudden flurry of interest. Yet most of the new material is either a continuation of or an overreaction to old ways of looking at diplomacy. Assuming that purposefulness is as characteristic of students as of practitioners of diplomacy, the inadequacy of most current writing suggests that the subject is highly resistant to systematic study. The tendency of some writers to continue in the same old vein might also be taken to suggest that the traditional study of diplomacy fills a need, even if it does not satisfy the equally important necessity for analysis of negotiations. On the other hand, some current reactions to the old diplomatic studies do attempt to provide systematic negotiations analysis, but they seem to be one of current political science’s “huge missteps in the right direction.” (Hoffmann 1960).