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Email in international negotiation

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This paper investigates the advantages and disadvantages of the use of email to obtain agreement between two parties with overlapping but also conflicting interests. The literature on Media Richness suggests that email is too lean to facilitate agreement; but all supporting evidence stems from homogenous populations. This paper, however, starts from the hypothesis that in connection with lingua franca interaction, the text format provides advantages for parties that need to think how to phrase an argument. However, the evidence provided from a negotiation task performed by international business students indicates that, while there is a distinct advantage in the feature of reviewability, the text format itself also poses a problem because it allows selective attention.

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Anne Marie B├╝low

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