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Published: Nov 07 , 2014
Author: Mike Freedman

Frequently people want to talk about their negotiating strategy. My immediate (if private) reaction to this is “oh dear!!” Negotiation is a means of dealing with conflict; it can be stressful. So, in preparation we tend to surround ourselves with all sorts of tools and defences that will make us feel more powerful or at least more comfortable. For example people like to play out their negotiation strategy before it happens. Their strategy involves a long storyboard, a sequence of exactly what they and the other side will say and do.

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The Ultimate Game Theory Strategy

‘The Prisoners’ Dilemma’ is a popular game theory example involving a two-person game of strategic interaction. One version is as follows. Two prisoners are accused of a crime. If one confesses and the other does not, the one who confesses will be released immediately and the other will spend 20 years in prison. If neither confesses, each will be held for only a few months. If both confess, they each spend 15 years in prison. This creates a paradox in decision analysis in which two individuals acting in their own self-interest do not produce the optimal outcome...

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