Inderscience Publishers

The third who joins a negotiation: a systematic review of the literature

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The article is aimed at providing a different perspective on third parties and tries to systematise our understanding about multilateral negotiations and integrative agreements. The key concepts investigated were the connection between the third who joins and the negotiation process, outcome and effectiveness, within business contexts. Research was guided using the so–called negotiation theory as a framework. Insights and documentation that previous research was fragmented are provided. Even if contemporary approaches integrated third party intervention in a broad understanding of causes and dynamics of conflicts, by definition third parties do not have a strong partisan position on the substantive issues in dispute. They seem to have been considered mainly as external entities, not fully interested and involved in the negotiation, thus with a lack of real interest for the implementation of the final agreement.

Keywords: multilateral negotiations, stakeholder management, integrative agreements, literature review, third parties, negotiation theory, third party intervention

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