Publication Type

Journal Article

Version

Publisher’s Version

Publication Date

1-2009

Abstract

This paper explores the implications of one aspect of intercultural theory –the dimension of power distance– in order to comment on the nature of commitments in the mediation process. The familiar model of Western ediation assumes that parties can identify core interests and negotiate around those, through prioritising, trading and balancing. At the heart of our thinking about commitments are our ideas about agency, autonomy, and accountability. However, a core implication of empirical work on power distance suggests that expectations of deference may lead some participants to avoid direct decision-making responsibility and, rather than work towards commitments, to act on the commitments or obligations they already have. Thus, low-power distance culture members are more able and willing to make commitments; high-power distance culture members are more constrained by having commitments. Whereas the Western model of negotiation and mediation addresses the means to reach commitments (the legitimacy of which stems from the choices the autonomous agents make), the norms that shape conduct in high-PD cultures are those the reflect having commitments and obligations (the legitimacy of which derives from antecedent relationships).

Keywords

Mediation, Culture, Power distance

Discipline

Dispute Resolution and Arbitration

Research Areas

Dispute Resolution

Publication

Journal of Conflictology

Issue

1

First Page

98

Last Page

104

ISSN

2013-8857

Identifier

10.7238/joc.v0i1.935

Publisher

Open University of Catalonia

Copyright Owner and License

Author

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Additional URL

http://journals.uoc.edu/index.php/journal-of-conflictology/article/view/vol0iss1-macduff

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