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26 Negot. J. 1 (2010)

handle is hein.journals/nejo26 and id is 1 raw text is: 





             Editor's Note



                  Negotiation Journal


From time to time, an issue of the Negotiation journal will include a set of
articles on a common theme. Often, these contributions are the fruit of a
recent conference, as was the case last April when we published a special
issue devoted to the next generation of negotiation pedagogy.
    Then, there are the welcome accidents, as with this issue. The articles
you will see here were submitted at different times and moved through the
editorial process at various speeds but happily came together at the right
time. You will not have to strain to see that most of them deal with conflict
resolution dynamics in one form or another.
    An  international authorial team (two from the United States plus four
from Poland) sets the major theme in their note on teaching students to
grasp and apply ideas from complexity theory. They maintain that under-
standing of conflict dynamics must  come  before any realistic hope of
crafting sustainable solutions. To support this assertion, they conducted a
pilot study in which some students were introduced to the idea of attrac-
tors, which in this context is a term for a self-organizing convergence of
behaviors and attitudes that can create patterns that are hard to break. The
students were  also trained to use a software that can help negotiators
visualize both the attractors for any given conflict as well as how changes
in the situation will affect those attractors and the conflict in the long term.
In a subsequent negotiation simulation, these students more successfully
addressed long-term dynamics  than  did a control group without  such
training.
    In the same vein, the article by Brooks Holtom, Katharine Gagne, and
Catherine Tinsley describes a variety of curricular materials designed to
give students practice in dealing with unexpected change as negotiation
unfolds. They remind us that it is not enough to learnfrom negotiation, but
we  must also learn on the fly within it. To help students develop these
skills, they recommend using shocks and rumors to shake the simulation
up a bit. They describe new simulations and also suggest ways in which
existing role-plays can be adapted  to make   them  more  manageably
dynamic.
    There is no need to force a dynamic construction on our two research
reports. Both deal with mediation, which itself is a process of learning and
adaptation for everyone involved. Jean Poitras, Arnaud Stimec, and Jean-
Franqois Roberge present a study of how the presence of an attorney can
affect outcomes and party attitudes in mediation. Despite the many fears of


Negotiation Journal January 2010 1

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