Making Things Happen: The Responsibility of Negotiation

Posted: 29 Feb 2008

See all articles by Mark A. Young

Mark A. Young

affiliation not provided to SSRN


Philosophical analysis can indeed have a practical impact on public policy. It is not only in the fields of ethics or decision theory that interdisciplinary approaches have proven to be fruitful, but also in the growing new discipline of conflict resolution. Using the anecdotal example of the Ten Point Coalition in Boston, this paper proposes a new 'philosophical' approach to conflict resolution. It starts with the realization that negotiation results are created jointly by the parties involved, and are therefore not easily predictable by external observers. It outlines a process whereby negotiators can work together in open conversation to establish reasons for action rather than seeking causes of results, thereby also taking on an ethical responsibility to jointly create a 'story', which can lead to hitherto unexpected solutions and, at the same time, also do justice to the ethical dimension of conflict resolution.

Keywords: negotiation, mediation

JEL Classification: A13, D63, D64, D74

Suggested Citation

Young, Mark A., Making Things Happen: The Responsibility of Negotiation. Socio-Economic Review, Vol. 3, pp. 133-152, 2005, Available at SSRN:

Mark A. Young (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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