Bruce Patton

Bruce PattonBruce Patton is a Distinguished Fellow of the Harvard Negotiation Project (HNP), which he co-founded with Roger Fisher and William Ury in 1979 and administered as Deputy Director until 2009. With Fisher, Patton pioneered the teaching of negotiation at Harvard Law School, where he was Thaddeus R. Beal Lecturer on Law for fifteen years. He continues to teach the Negotiation Workshop and Advanced Negotiation Workshop in the Harvard Negotiation Institute, the Program on Negotiation for Senior Executives, and occasional courses for law students. In 1984 Patton, Fisher, and three HNP alumni founded Conflict Management, Inc., a negotiation consulting and training firm, and Conflict Management Group (now part of Mercy Corps), a not-for-profit entity that works on conflicts of public concern. In 1997, Patton and four CMI/HNP colleagues founded Vantage Partners, llc, an international consulting firm that helps Global 2000 companies negotiate and manage strategic relationships for bottom-line results. Patton is the co-author with Roger Fisher and William Ury of Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In (Second Edition, Penguin, 1991), and with Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen of Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most (Viking/Penguin, 1999). To date, there are more than 5 million copies of Getting to Yes in print in 36 languages, while Difficult Conversations is a New York Times business bestseller that has been translated into almost as many languages. Patton received his A.B. from Harvard College in 1978 and his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1984.

Courses Taught:

Program on Negotiation for Senior Executives – Executive Education Seminar, PON

Negotiation Workshop, Harvard Negotiation Institute

Advanced Negotiation Workshop: Difficult Conversations, Harvard Negotiation Institute

Research Interests: effective negotiation techniques; mediation and multiparty alignment processes; dispute systems design; organizational capacity-building mechanisms for effective negotiation, relationship, and conflict management in strategic contexts; negotiation pedagogy.

Select Publications:

“The Deceptive Simplicity of Teaching Negotiation,” 25 Negotiation Journal 481 (October 2009).

“Enlightened Power Through Difficult Conversations” with Michelle Gravelle and Scott Peppet, in Enlightened Power: How Women Are Transforming the Practice of Leadership, Linda Coughlin, Ellen Wingard, and Keith Hollihan, Eds., Jossey-Bass, 2005.

“Negotiation” in The Handbook of Dispute Resolution, Michael L. Moffitt and Robert C. Bordone, Eds., Jossey-Bass, 2005.

“Building Relationships and the Bottom Line: The Circle of Value Approach to Negotiation” 7 Negotiation Newsletter 4 (April 2004).

“Negotiation Power,” Executive Excellence, April 1, 2001.

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most (with Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen), Viking/Penguin, 1999.

“Some Techniques for Teaching Negotiation to Large Groups,” 11 Negotiation Journal 403 (October 1995).

Getting to YES, Second Edition, (with Fisher and Ury), Penguin, 1991; Editor, First Edition, Houghton Mifflin, 1981.

“On Teaching Negotiation,” Program on Negotiation Working Paper, 1984; updated with commentary and included in Teaching Negotiation: Ideas and Innovations, Michael Wheeler, Ed., PON Books, 2000.

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