The purpose of this article is to examine phase-differences in the patterns of actors involved in decision making. Two phases are distinguished, the negotiating phase, and the decision-making phase. During the first phase the agent's primary goal is to influence the policy position of other agents, whereas during the second phase the agent's goal is to find a solution (especially if there is a credible threat of a worse outcome). Convincing others is easier in a bilateral setting than in a multilateral one, and thus the decision-making phase is expected to result in an increase in multilateral interactions. To reveal the participation pattern of agents, we discuss methods for quantitative analyses of complex negotiations. A dynamic analysis of participation in multilateral negotiations gives insight into the continuity and change of participation during a negotiating process. The process of determining prices for specialized medical care in The Netherlands is used as a case study. The quantitative methods seem to be useful for analyzing such a complex case. Following our hypothesis, in the case study multilateral contacts are shown to be more frequent over time as compared to bilateral negotiations.

Cluster analysis, Continuity of participation, Decision making, Dynamic analysis, Multilateral negotiations, Phase-differences,
Social Networks
Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM)

van Merode, F, Nieboer, A.P, Maarse, H, & Lieverdink, H. (2004). Analyzing the dynamics in multilateral negotiations. Social Networks, 26(2), 141–154. doi:10.1016/j.socnet.2004.01.006