ne·​go·​ti·​a·​tion | \ni-ˌgō-shē-ˈā-shən, nonstandard -sē- \

Definition of negotiation 

: the action or process of negotiating or being negotiated often used in plural Negotiations between the two governments have failed to produce an agreement.

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Examples of negotiation in a Sentence

We need a negotiation between the townspeople and mayor over the site of the new library. She is skilled at negotiation. The college president was against any negotiation with the students.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The action follows criticism of China earlier this week by President Donald Trump, who blamed China for undermining negotiations with North Korea a day after Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s visit to Pyongyang left talks uncertain. Ian Talley, WSJ, "U.S. Calls Out China, Russia on North Korea Energy Caps, Urges U.N. Action," 12 July 2018 Both Seri and Le Marchand are awaiting to undergo medicals with Fulham once final negotiations with Nice have concluded., "Fulham Move Closer to Finalising £30m Double Swoop for Jean Michaël Seri & Maxime Le Marchand," 12 July 2018 Dominic Raab will lead negotiations with the EU as the new Brexit secretary. The Economist, "Politics this week," 12 July 2018 Sponsors of three highly controversial ballot measures dropped them after backroom negotiations with legislators. Dan Walters,, "Genteel extortion cancels 3 California ballot measures," 3 July 2018 Teams can begin negotiation with free agents at 12:01 a.m. Sunday. CBS News, "LeBron James becoming a free agent, AP reports," 29 June 2018 Blast From the Past | The U.K. should start planning to delay Brexit and extend negotiations with the EU or face the disaster of leaving without a deal, former Prime Minister Tony Blair will tell the Chatham House think tank in London on Wednesday. Ian Wishart,, "Brexit Bulletin: Pandora’s Box," 27 June 2018 Even with the flight plans filed, a negotiation with the tanker crew ensues across the radio. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "B-52 Bombers Could Quadruple Their Wing Bomb Loads," 25 June 2018 The city will now begin one-on-one contract negotiations with The Boring Company, after which the agreement will be presented to the City Council. Andrew J. Hawkins, The Verge, "Elon Musk’s Boring Company approved to build high-speed transit between downtown Chicago and O’Hare Airport," 14 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'negotiation.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of negotiation

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for negotiation

Middle English negociacion "dealing with people," borrowed from Latin negōtiātiōn-, negōtiātiō "business, trade," from negōtiārī "to do business, trade, deal" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns — more at negotiate

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Statistics for negotiation

Last Updated

4 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for negotiation

The first known use of negotiation was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for negotiation



Financial Definition of negotiation

What It Is

Negotiation is a process in which two or more parties resolve a dispute or come to a mutual agreement.

How It Works

Negotiations occur all the time in the business world, and they are often strategic in nature. In many cases, they require a good legal education and a good financial education so that the parties can understand each other, make sound decisions, and understand the potential consequences of those decisions.

Negotiation often takes place in these business situations:

1. Company A and Company B want to merge but must agree on price, financing, and management changes.
2. John Doe wants a job with Company XYZ but must negotiate his salary and benefits.
3. Company A wants to purchase supplies from Company B on certain payment terms.
4. Company A wants Company B to become a customer.
5. John Doe is suing Jane Smith, and Jane Smith offers to settle out of court for a certain amount of money.
6. Union ABC wants higher wages and pension contributions from Company XYZ.
7. Jane Smith wants to buy a house from John Doe.

Why It Matters

The list is endless. The important thing to remember is that negotiation is not necessarily adversarial; it often is a strategic process. The objective is to come up with an agreement that benefits all parties. Sometimes parties must give up some things, but this is indeed part of the negotiation, and giving something up frequently allows for gains in other areas of the negotiation.

The best negotiators prepare themselves by studying the situation extensively before entering the negotiating room. They also consider deadlines, timing, cultural expectations, personalities, and the distribution of information in their negotiating strategies.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of negotiation

: a formal discussion between people who are trying to reach an agreement : an act of negotiating


ne·​go·​ti·​a·​tion | \ni-ˌgō-shē-ˈā-shən \

Kids Definition of negotiation

: the act or process of having a discussion in order to reach an agreement

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