C.K.W. de Dreu
E. van de Vliert
- Organizational mediators siding with or against the powerful party?
- Journal of Applied Social Psychology
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
Examined whether, instead of being impartial, a mediator may side with one party as a function of the disputants' power differences (power balancing theory), the mediator's legitimacy judgments (siding theory), or the disputants' capacity to sanction the mediator (siding theory). A questionnaire study of 107 personnel managers (organizational mediators (OMs)) and 99 students undergoing vocational managerial training assessed these 3 variables in a case story. Compared to Disputant B, Disputant A had more or equal power, more or equal legitimacy, and more or equal capacity to sanction the mediator. OMs sided with the less powerful rather than the more powerful party, especially when this weaker party had equal rather than less capacity to sanction the mediator. Thus, the tendency to balance power is moderated by the mediator's self-interest. Mediators tended to favor the party they saw as more legitimate."
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