An Instrument for Identification of Intention to Settle in Project Dispute Negotiation

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Original languageEnglish
Article number04023030
Number of pages14
Journal / PublicationJournal of Management in Engineering - ASCE
Issue number5
Online published27 Jun 2023
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023


Negotiation is widely known as the most effective way to resolve differences. Traditions of negotiation studies have contributed to this area by providing prescriptive, quantitative, and behavioral research to improve the success of negotiation. This study argues that negotiators’ settlement intentions underpin the functionality of advice under the three traditions of negotiation studies. This study aims to establish ways to identify the intention to settle (ITS) of project dispute negotiators. A longitudinal study was conducted, and a questionnaire was designed by operationalizing an ITS framework that includes technique-based, relationship-based, and cognition-based intention from a thorough literature review. Two rounds of data were collected from the same group of project negotiation practitioners at a three-month interval. The time consistency of the responses was supported by the results of a paired t-test. The same ITS structure was achieved through the test and retest methodology with the two sets of cross-sectional data, supporting the reliability of the structure. The framework was validated to be stable across time by testing the longitudinal factorial invariance. With these steps, a robust ITS identification instrument was developed. The practical applications of the ITS instrument were confirmed by practicing project dispute negotiators. The study theoretically contributes to the body of knowledge by offering a validated ITS framework. On the practical side, the ITS framework is further developed into an identification instrument that can be used in negotiation studies. Notably, the ITS identification instrument can be incorporated into the negotiation decision mechanisms to support negotiators in gauging how conducive in terms of intention to the settlement of a negotiation. © 2023 American Society of Civil Engineers.

Research Area(s)

  • Identification instrument, Intention to settle (ITS), Longitudinal study, Project dispute negotiation, Test-retest methodology