Psychological research has helped to illuminate the individual decision-making processes involved in the resolution of disputes. One line of inquiry, conducted primarily by psychologists publishing in psychological journals, explores individuals' relative preferences for, and satisfaction with, various dispute resolution procedures—such as trial, mediation, and arbitration—and what drives these preferences. The second, largely conducted by lawyers publishing in law reviews, explores the cognitive biases that make negotiators less likely to settle disputes even when it would be rational for them to do so. The third area of research focuses on the uses of interests, rights, and power as ways to resolve disputes.

These research areas primarily, but not exclusively, use experimental or quasi-experimental laboratory studies to discern the causal or correlational relationships between various variables of interest. ...

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