Negotiation skills play a critical role for today’s knowledge workers. Therefore, the need for university students to develop negotiation and problem-solving skills grows more important each year. Concurrently, the need for students to understand and work with computers continues to grow. This paper presents the exploratory results of using a prototype computer negotiation system developed around a set of real world data. The paper reviews previous research perspectives of negotiation, traditional (face to face) and information system perspectives (electronic). The social information processing theory posits that these characteristics differ between these two groups and that over time the characteristics exhibited by electronic group members should match those exhibited by the traditional group members. The results found differences in the characteristics of satisfaction, trust and tolerance, but did not find a convergence of perceptions between the two groups. The paper concludes by addressing critical success factors for future research in this area.
Key Terms in this Chapter
Social Information Processing: The theory that when people work together, both verbal and non-verbal channels transfer information to others.
Critical Success Factors: Those factors or conditions that must be satisfied or accomplished for a project to be successful.
Group Decision Support Systems (GDSSs): Information systems designed to support groups in the processes involved in making decisions.
Negotiation: Formal process by which two individuals or groups reach consensus or agreement on a topic.
Negotiation Support System: Information system designed to support individuals or groups in the process of negotiation.
Traditional Negotiation: Formal manual process of negotiation that includes both verbal and non-verbal exchanges of information. Traditional negotiation is positioned “opposite” NSS in that NSSs do not provide for information to transfer over traditional social channels.