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Case-Based Research on International Negotiation: Approaches and Data Sets

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Four case-based research approaches to analysis of data on international negotiation are discussed: the single, analytical case study, the temporal or time-series case study, the focused comparison of a small number of similar cases, and aggregate comparisons of a large number of different cases. The strategies are compared in terms of a number of methodological and substantive features. They are considered as alternative routes to theory development, understood best in relation to each other and best utilized together as part of a multi-method research strategy. The role of frameworks for guiding comparative analyses is discussed in the second part of the article. They are illustrated in conjunction with several multivariate projects involving the coding of variables from a variety of cases. Methods of analysis and findings obtained from these projects are then summarized. These framework-driven comparative analyses are facilitated by the advent of web-based technologies. The new technologies are especially useful for collecting information about cases of negotiation not described in archival publications. The article concludes with challenges that confront the analyst and some gaps that remain to be filled.

Affiliations: 1: Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia 22030, USA (E-mail:


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