Negotiation, not adjudication, resolves most legal conflicts. However, despite the fact that dispute resolution is central to the practice of law and has become a “hot” topic in legal circles, a gap in the literature persists. “Legal negotiation” — negotiation with lawyers in the middle and legal institutions in the background — has escaped systematic analysis.

The Harvard Negotiation Law Review works to close this gap by providing a forum in which scholars from many disciplines can discuss negotiation as it relates to law and legal institutions. It is aimed specifically at lawyers and legal scholars. In its 18 year history, the journal has explored interdisciplinary academic perspectives on such topics as decision analysis; litigation settlement; mediator roles, strategies and tactics; the lawyer’s role as a problem solver; reconsideration of legal education in light of negotiation; and a range of case studies of innovative negotiation and mediation systems around the world.


HNLR has established itself as a major player on the ADR stage.”

Robert Mnookin, Samuel Williston Professor of Law
Chair, Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School


Approximately 30% of our articles deal with negotiation, 30% with mediation, 15% with arbitration, and 25% with other dispute-resolution topics such as dispute systems design and court-annexed procedures.

Our most cited articles include Leonard Riskin’s seminal article “Understanding Mediators’ Orientations, Strategies and Techniques: A Grid for the Perplexed” and Kimberlee Kovach and Lela Love’s response to Riskin’s article, “Mapping Mediation: The Risks of Riskin’s Grid.”

HNLR articles have also received several awards. I. Glenn Cohen received the CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution Award for his 2004 article “Negotiating Death: ADR and End of Life Decision-Making.”

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