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The Impact of Compulsory Arbitration on Bargaining Behavior: An Experimental Study

  • Kritikos, Alexander S.

A series of experiments compares bargaining behavior under three different settings: no arbitration, conventional and final offer arbitration. Under no arbitration disputes with zero payoffs were around 10%, while the pie was equally split in less than half of the cases. Under conventional arbitration - where the arbitrator is free in choosing his award - every third negotiation ended in dispute giving evidence for a modified chilling effect. Under final offer arbitration – where the arbitrator has to award to the bargainers either one of their final offers - there was only a small increase of disputes while equal splits have doubled to 80%. The experiment shows final offer arbitration, though having lower dispute rates, to interfer more with bargaining behavior than conventional arbitration where the bargaining behavior was similar to the no-arbitration treatment. Under final offer arbitration, negotiators adjust their bargaining strategy to the arbitrator´s expected award.

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Paper provided by European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Department of Business Administration and Economics in its series Discussion Papers with number 230.

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Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:euvwdp:230
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  1. Babcock, Linda, et al, 1995. "Biased Judgments of Fairness in Bargaining," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1337-43, December.
  2. Ashenfelter, Orley & Currie, Janet, 1990. "Negotiator Behavior and the Occurence of Disputes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 416-20, May.
  3. Andrea Ichino & Armin Falk, 2003. "Clean evidence on peer pressure," Natural Field Experiments 00239, The Field Experiments Website.
  4. Forsythe Robert & Horowitz Joel L. & Savin N. E. & Sefton Martin, 1994. "Fairness in Simple Bargaining Experiments," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 347-369, May.
  5. Neelin, Janet & Sonnenschein, Hugo & Spiegel, Matthew, 1988. "A Further Test of Noncooperative Bargaining Theory: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 824-36, September.
  6. Rubinstein, Ariel, 1982. "Perfect Equilibrium in a Bargaining Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 97-109, January.
  7. Kennan, John & Wilson, Robert, 1990. "Can Strategic Bargaining Models Explain Collective Bargaining Data?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 405-09, May.
  8. Guth, Werner, 1995. "On ultimatum bargaining experiments -- A personal review," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 329-344, August.
  9. Leuven, Edwin & Oosterbeek, Hessel & van der Klaauw, Bas, 2003. "The Effect of Financial Rewards on Students' Achievements: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment," CEPR Discussion Papers 3921, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Armstrong, Michael J. & Hurley, W. J., 2002. "Arbitration using the closest offer principle of arbitrator behavior," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 19-26, January.
  11. Weg, Eythan & Rapoport, Amnon & Felsenthal, Dan S., 1990. "Two-person bargaining behavior in fixed discounting factors games with infinite horizon," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 76-95, March.
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