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NCJ Number: 98954 Find in a Library
Title: Negotiating From Asymmetry - The North-South Stalemate
Journal: Negotiation Journal  Volume:1  Issue:2  Dated:(April 1985)  Pages:121-138
Author(s): I W Zartman
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 18
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: After reviewing the literature on power asymmetry in international negotiations and the poor record of 'North-South' ('First World'-'Third World') international negotiations, this article suggests ways of using, improving, and timing the negotiation process to yield better results.
Abstract: International negotiations between countries divided along the North-South axis are archetypical cases of power asymmetry. There is a constant power and demand imbalance between these countries. Fortunately, North-South negotiations generally have a substantive focus on economic matters, which contain manipulable ingredients that permit negotiations to be influenced by factors other than power confrontation and imbalance. The discussion of ways to improve such negotiations is based on an examination of specific North-South encounters, from straightforward attempts at global restructuring to more narrow efforts to isolate a workable segment of an issue. Nine cases were selected for analysis. The broadest and longest case analyzed was the Third Conference on the Law of the Sea, which involved all United Nations members in a series of meetings. Two kinds of lessons are drawn from these cases. One lesson points to a better use of negotiation conceived as a threefold process: diagnosis of both sides' needs, interests, and alternatives; formulation of a joint, coherent notion of the problem and its solution; and elaboration on details which fairly and accurately implement the formula. The second lesson points to ways of breaking up the blocks formed by parties and issues on either side of the North-South divide by using incrementalism, mediators, coalitions, and representation. These lessons are examined in detail. Twenty-five notes are provided.
Index Term(s): International agreements; International dispute settlement; Negotiation
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