Logical Foundations of Negotiation: Strategies and Preferences

Thomas Meyer, Norman Foo, Rex Kwok, and Dongmo Zhang

This paper is a contribution towards the body of literature which views negotiation in a qualitative light. It builds on an existing logical framework for negotiation between rational, cooperative, truthful agents proposed by Meyer et al. We show that agents equipped with negotiation strategies corresponding to basic AGM belief revision operations are capable of reaching exactly the permissible deals defined and discussed in previous work. Each agent has to present a set of weakened demands to the other party who, in return, is obliged to accept all weakened demands. The acceptance of demands is modelled by basic AGM belief revision. We extend the logical framework of Meyer et al. by considering scenarios in which the initial demand sets of agents may vary. We show that it forces agents to limit their negotiation strategies to AGM belief revision satisfying the supplementary AGM postulates. This leads to the redefinition of a negotiation strategy as a reference relation on demands. This extended framework provides a description of the deals that an agent ought to consider as reasonable, but provides no information on how it should go about choosing a particular deal. We conclude with suggestions on how negotiation strategies can be used to do so.

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