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Project 1: Building Business Models for E-negotiation Services


Coordinator:   Y. Yuan, McMaster University
Key researchers:   J. Etezadi, Concordia University, K. Laframboise, Concordia University, Ch. Weinhardt, University of Karlsruhe, St. Strecker, University of Karlsruhe.


The objective of this research is to build business models for e-negotiation services. Although negotiation support systems have been studied and developed for more than two decades, they had very little influence in industry in the past. The advances of Internet technology and the growth of e-commerce make it possible and desirable to offer e-negotiation services through the Internet. However, can these e-negotiation services be profitable? What is the appropriate business model that may lead to the success of e-negotiation services?

As corporate strategies evolve, we witness specific departmental functions being diluted throughout the firm as a company-wide philosophy skill set. Is it likely that in the future every manager will be quality manager, IT manager, and also supply chain manager? What is the impact for e-negotiations when firms that transact with each other reach this point of corporate maturity? To answer these questions a number of issues need to be addressed. The evolution of organizational structures needs to be determined to predict their future shape. We need to study the potential impact of the new structures on the way that transactions are negotiated between firms. The situation assessment is followed by:

  1. Identification of the market demand for e-negotiation services and classification of the existing e-negotiation services that provide values to meet these demands.
  2. Identification of the negotiation scenarios in which e-negotiations replace traditional negotiations, their benefits and the success factors for commercial e-negotiations.
  3. Identification of the cost structure and source of revenue and study of the extension of the traditional business models for dimensions particular to e-negotiations.
  4. Identification of the challenges for the success of e-negotiation including user acceptance, security and privacy protection etc.
  5. Specification of the business chances and risks faced by e-negotiation service providers.
  6. Work on a framework for the development of e-negotiation business models. The framework can be used by e-negotiation service providers to develop a successful business strategy.

Key activities:

  1. Conduct web searching and collect information about existing e-negotiation services.
  2. Build a theoretical business model for e-negotiation services.
  3. Develop questionnaire to collect data from selected e-negotiation services.
  4. Data collection (questionnaire and side visits); survey via a web-based questionnaire.
  5. Structural factors for successful deployment of e-negotiation initiatives.
  6. Business models for e-negotiation services for travel industry.
  7. Data analysis and models’ verification.


January 13, 2004