Unifying Negotiation Framework 1.0: An Organizing Metanarrative of Policy Discourse

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Working Paper

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The broad field of participatory approaches to public decision making has been a hugely active area of scholarship and practice over the past 20 years. There is no comprehensive bibliography of this field, but the number of scholarly articles is surely in the thousands. This frenetic scholarship has been distributed across many different fields, appears in many different literatures, and is drawn from experiences from virtually every region of the globe. In addition, this socio-political phenomenon has sprung up largely outside of academic settings and researchers are struggling to keep pace and document what is occurring in practice. The primary focus of this article is the design of participatory processes in the public policy arena. Scholars’ collective attempts to understand the emergence of participatory methods appears to have been significantly inhibited by three factors: a large and increasingly unwieldy terminology, difficulties in getting beyond case study research toward more synthetic scholarship, and absence of conceptual models that help field practitioners (negotiators, facilitators, mediators) get a handle on complex situations and thereby facilitate those practitioners’ design efforts.


The Unifying Negotiation Framework is in press at Conflict Resolution Quarterly. In order to comply with the publisher’s policy on original content, the working paper has been taken down. It is available upon request directly from steve.daniels@usu.edu or gwalker@osu.edu.

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