Culture and getting to yes : The linguistic signature of creative agreements in the United States and Egypt

Abstract

We complement the dominant rational model of negotiation found in the West with a new honor model of negotiation found in many Arabic-speaking populations and illustrate the linguistic processes that facilitate creativity in negotiation agreements in the United States and Egypt. Community samples (N= 136) were recruited in the United States and Egypt and negotiated an integrative bargaining task, Discount Marketplace. Analyses of categories of the Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (LIWC) and our own newly developed honor dictionary illustrate that the same language that predicts integrative agreements in the United States, namely, that which is rational and logical (cognitive mechanisms, LIWC), actually backfires and hinders agreements in Egypt. Creativity in Egypt, by contrast, reflects an honor model of negotiating with language that promotes honor gain (i.e., moral integrity) and honor protection (i.e., image and strength). Theoretical and practical implications are discussed. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Gelfand2015CultureAG, title={Culture and getting to yes : The linguistic signature of creative agreements in the United States and Egypt}, author={Michele J. Gelfand and Laura Severance and Tiane L. Lee and Christopher Bayan and Janetta Lun and Abdel-Hamid Abdel-Latif and ASMAA AHMED AL-MOGHAZY and Sally M Ahmed}, year={2015} }