Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Business Administration

Major Professor

C. John Langley

Committee Members

Ray Mundy, Ernest Cadotte, Ralph O'Brien


Since deregulation of the motor carrier industry in 1980, shipper and motor carrier practitioners have gained greater interest in understanding the negotiation process necessary to achieve contacts for motor carrier service. In addition, the marketing discipline has recently show interest in studying the applications of negotiation activities in exchange environments. This study looks at the elements of the negotiation process used by motor carriers and shippers to reach contractual agreements for transportation service. This study assesses the application of the process in different situations. Data was collected in two phases using personal interviews to collect data from case study participants, and second, through a mail survey which collected data from a national sample of shipper and motor carrier negotiators. The data collected in the mail survey was analyzed to assess group differences using discriminate analysis, and to test the process conceptualization presented as a basis for the study. The process tests were conducted using forms of multiple regression analysis and correlation analysis.

The results indicate differences between shipper groups, motor carrier groups, and between shipper and motor carriers on all of the areas of the conceptual model tested. Assessment of the elements of the negotiation process indicate the importance of preparation prior to bargaining activities, and the potential differences which can arise in the outcome from different bargaining approaches to reach contract agreement. The information provided from this study can be beneficial to both practitioners and academics that have an interest in either the theoretical foundations which were developed, or the application of the information for negotiation activities.

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