The science of negotiating art: Negotiation research applied to museums

By | 29 octobre 2015

How to negotiate an art piece? The present study focuses on understanding the nature of negotiation in the context of exhibitions. The parties involved are museums, art dealers and collectors. We derive our hypotheses from negotiation strategy (Walton and McKersie, 1965) and cultural differences on negotiation (Aslani et al., 2013). We present preliminary data from 5 interviews with museum directors and exhibition commissioners in France and the United States. Our results show that despite the fact that museums have different decision makers depending on their structure, loans are facilitated by expected reciprocity. However, contrary to our theoretical expectations from positional negotiation, the arguments of demand of each piece facilitate decision making s about its loan. Moreover, power imbalance dominates in the relationship between art dealers and museums, such that private funds are bigger than those of national art institutions. Finally, our results show that when it comes to donations, identifying the collectors values and needs ease the interchange. Negotiation between museums is relational and we discuss the elements that facilitate those relationships. Implications for practice will be advanced at the conference
Jimena Ramirez Marin and Anne Chounavelle
IESEG School of Management (France)

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