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The Effects of Agents and Mediators on Negotiation Outcomes, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes


This paper examines how third-party intervention affects the direct behavior of negotiators. Study 2 explores the impact of alternative third-party roles on negotiated outcomes, examining the impact of agents and mediators on the negotiated price and the likelihood of impasse. Results show that the selling price of a property is higher when an agent is used than when no intermediary is involved. However, the selling price was not affected bi the use of a mediator. The use of an agent is also shown to increase the rate of impasse. In Study 3, we explore the nature of the negotiated relationship between the parties and an agent involved in completing the transaction. Agent commission, measured as a percentage of the sale price of a property, is lower when the bargaining zone is reduced. These studies document the importance of analyzing the impact of autonomous third-party roles on the outcomes of negotiation.




Max H Bazerman, Margaret A. Neale, Kathleen L. Valley, Edward Zajac, YongMin Kim

Date Published



Bazerman, H Max, Margaret A. Neale, Kathleen L. Valley, Edward Zajac, and YongMin Kim. 1992. The Effects of Agents and Mediators on Negotiation Outcomes. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. 53(1): 55-73.


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