Michael Wheeler

Michael Wheeler

Senior Fellow, Program on Negotiation, at Harvard Law School

Chaired Professor of Management Practice, Harvard Business School (ret.)

Michael Wheeler has been affiliated with the Program on Negotiation since its founding in 1983. At that time, he was on the faculty of MIT’s Department of Urban Studies & Planning where he co-authored the award-winning text Environmental Dispute Resolution with Larry Bacow. He was editor of PON’s Negotiation Journal for twenty years.

Wheeler joined the Harvard Business School faculty in 1993 and was named to an endowed chair in 1999. In 2004 he received the Greenhill Award for advancing the mission of the school. His research and teaching there have focused on the dynamic, improvisational nature of negotiation. His perspective extends—and in some respects, challenges—traditional ideas about negotiation strategy and tactics.

In recent years, Wheeler’s work has centered on the use of computer-based technologies to teach, study, and manage negotiations. In 2020 he co-chaired (with Jim Sebenius) PON’s conference on AI, Technology, and Negotiation. He also developed the Negotiation 360 self-assessment/best practice app for iOS and Android devices and cohosts the Agility at Work podcast with Dr. Kimberlyn Leary on popular platforms.


Amherst College, B.A.
Boston University School of Law, J.D.
Harvard Law School, LL.M.

Research interests

Agile negotiation strategy and tactics; computer-based technologies for teaching, managing, and studying negotiation; negotiation ethics; emotion and inter-personal dynamics.

Selected publications

  • The Art of Negotiation: Improvising Agreement in a Chaotic World, Simon and Schuster, (2013).
  • What’s Fair: Ethics for Negotiations (co-edited with Carrie Menkel-Meadow), Wiley (2004).
  • “Negotiating with Emotion,” (with Kimberlyn Leary and Julianna Pillemer), Harvard Business Review, (January 2013).
  • “Negotiation 360,” self-assessment/peer feedback/best practice app, Harvard Business Publishing, (November 2017).

One Response to “Michael Wheeler”

  • Greg W.

    In your Sunday Minute your likening negotiations to jazz was spot on and very clever. As a mediator i always thought of myself as a conductor following the script and allowing parties to deal with the issues. But as a negotiator you need to have the skills of a jazz muso in order to create the artistic effect.


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