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Reif, Julia A. M.; Brodbeck, Felix C. (February 2017): When Do People Initiate a Negotiation? The Role of Discrepancy, Satisfaction, and Ability Beliefs. In: Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, Vol. 10, No. 1: pp. 46-66
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Negotiation research increasingly pays attention to the beginning of negotiations. Building on a theory of the initiation of negotiation we investigated when and why people consider initiating negotiations. Results from one field study and two scenario experiments show that a negative discrepancy between an actual state and a desired state increased the intention to initiate a negotiation and promoted real initiation behavior. This effect was mediated by the subjective perception of this discrepancy and feelings of dissatisfaction. Expectancy considerations in the form of ability to initiate negotiations and implicit beliefs about negotiation ability moderated this serial mediation effect: high initiation ability and incremental negotiation beliefs facilitated the decision to negotiate whereas low initiation ability and entity negotiation beliefs inhibited negotiation initiations. In the present work, we offer a first empirical test of the theory of initiation of negotiation.