How Does Culture Influence Conflict Resolution? A Dynamic Constructive Analysis

By Michael W. MorrisHo-Ying Fu
2000| Working Paper No. 1649

Psychologists have taken several approaches to modeling how culture influences the ways individuals negotiate interpersonal conflict. Most common has been the approach of searching for cultural traits, general, stable value-orientations that predict a variety of culturally typical conflict resolution behaviors. Increasingly researchers have adopted a constructivist approach of locating the nexus of cultural influence in the knowledge structures that guide negotiators’ judgments and decisions. In this paper, we advocate extending the constructivist approach by incorporating principles from social cognition research on knowledge activation. We develop dynamic constructivist hypotheses about how the influence of culture on negotiation is moderated by stimulus or task that the conflict presents, the social context in with the negotiator is embedded, and the negotiator/perceiver’s epistemic state.