The Negotiator's Desk Reference: Introduction
The Negotiator's Desk Reference (Christopher Honeyman & Andrea Kupfer Schneider, eds., 2017)
13 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2018
Date Written: February 13, 2018
With The Negotiator's Desk Reference we have tried to provide the most up-to-date negotiation writings possible from as many disciplines as possible. We are both honored and humbled by the array of talented and wise colleagues who have joined in this effort.
In the Preface, we outline the 14-year path that has brought us to this point. Our assumption has always been that “we don’t know what we don’t know,” and that to continue working to improve the field, we ourselves need to be consciously open to new sources. The same applies, we think, to other scholars and practitioners; and the 106 contributors here have conspicuously accepted this principle. The imperative to work across disciplinary boundaries should also be obvious to scholars by now, and again, our colleagues have honored it, in a variety of ways.
This book tries to do the translational work of taking great theory and research and showing how both impact practical negotiations. It also tries to summarize each theory or line of research into usable “bite-size” chunks, so that scholars and teachers can efficiently distinguish what they already know, what they would like to know more about, and what they might want to include in their next course.
In such a process, we have necessarily drawn on different stages of “subject maturity” for different topics. Some chapters here are based on empirical research that is truly cutting-edge. Many chapters are based on their authors’ far more detailed works or even complete books, and we greatly appreciate their willingness to edit their thoughts into brief pieces. Other chapters are based primarily in stories from the real world. It is our objective to interrelate such practitioners’ hard-won wisdom with other chapters, containing scholars’ related research and theoretical insights, so that the next practitioner to encounter a similar problem has more to go on. Among examples of these are the chapters on negotiation in the professional boxing ring, hostage negotiations, Kashmir, Africa, and public policy cases.
We appreciate the authors who have in the chapters tried something brave, as some have. We believe that it’s essential, to a field that hopes to maintain its now 40 years of rapid development, that the editors of a reference book such as this not take a conservative, “proven treatments only” cut at the universe of topics, but take a few risks ourselves. What we have seen as a result confirms our conviction that these creative ideas will likely lead to other creative ideas, as well as the development of more useful and interesting negotiation practice work.
Keywords: negotiation, dispute resolution, conflict management, conflict resolution
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