Journal of Information Technology Theory and Application (JITTA)


The paper explores the impact of culture on anonymous inter- and intracultural negotiations conducted via the Internet using a Web-based negotiation support system (NSS). In e-negotiations, technology acts as a moderator in the relationship between culture and negotiation behavior. This implies that patterns of cultural impact on negotiations can be different from face-to-face negotiations. Communication technology reduces the transmission of social cues and increases the importance of explicit communication. Thus, cultural dimensions such as power distance, which rely on social cues, are reduced in their impact, while the impact of communication-related dimensions of cultures such as high vs. low context is amplified by the system. The empirical analysis of these effects is based on a set of bilateral negotiations involving 1366 participants carried out with the Web-based NSS Inspire. It indicates a significant influence of culture, particularly regarding negotiators’ expectations. We also found significant cultural differences with regard to communication patterns emerging during the negotiation process and outcomes of negotiations. Our results also indicate that as the negotiation process progresses, individual differences between negotiators, including their approach to problem solving, become more important than their cultural characteristics.