Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Spring 2001

Abstract

Most scholarship on negotiation ethics has focused on the topics of deception and disclosure. In this Article, I argue for considering a related, but distinct, ethical domain within negotiation ethics. That domain is the ethics of orientation. In contrast to most forms of human interaction, a clear purpose of negotiation is to get the other party to take an action on one's behalf, or at least to explore that possibility. This gives rise to a core ethical tension in negotiation that I call the object-subject tension: how does one reconcile the fact that the other party is a potential means to one's ends with general ethical requirements for treating people? In response, I argue that there is a general moral duty to respect other people, a duty that is not overridden by the fact of negotiation. I examine the nature of this duty and its implications for both direct principal-to-principal negotiations and legal negotiations conducted indirectly through lawyers.

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