Reducing mistrust in agent-human negotiations

Yinping Yang, Horacio Falcao, Nuno Delicado, Andrew Ortony

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Face-to-face negotiations always benefit if the interacting individuals trust each other. But trust is also important in online interactions, even for humans interacting with a computational agent. In this article, the authors describe a behavioral experiment to determine whether, by volunteering information that it need not disclose, a software agent in a multi-issue negotiation can alleviate mistrust in human counterparts who differ in their propensities to mistrust others. Results indicated that when cynical, mistrusting humans negotiated with an agent that proactively communicated its issue priority and invited reciprocation, there were significantly more agreements and better utilities than when the agent didn't volunteer such information. Furthermore, when the agent volunteered its issue priority, the outcomes for mistrusting individuals were as good as those for trusting individuals, for whom the volunteering of issue priority conferred no advantage. These findings provide insights for designing more effective, socially intelligent agents in online negotiation settings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6636309
Pages (from-to)36-43
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Intelligent Systems
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2014


  • agent-human negotiation
  • intelligent systems
  • online negotiation
  • socially intelligent agents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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