In 1979, a research project at Harvard Law School - The Harvard Negotiation Project (HNP) - was founded to conduct research and develop theories and practices of effective negotiation and dispute resolution. The Harvard Negotiation Project was the first interdisciplinary research center on negotiation in the world.

The power of productive, mutual gain negotiation was given widespread prominence with the publication of the landmark book, Getting to YES: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, written by Harvard Law School Professor Roger Fisher with a second edition co-authored by Vantage Partners' co-founder, Bruce Patton.

A number of key founders of the Harvard Negotiation Project came to realize that the innovative principles being applied so successfully to conflict around the globe were just as critical to the on-going challenges facing many businesses. As a result, Vantage Partners was founded in 1997.  Since then, Vantage has helped many of the world’s biggest and best corporations build organizational and individual expertise in negotiating, managing organizational conflict and building effective partnerships. 

Simultaneously, a number of the founders of Vantage Partners have continued their work with Conflict Management Group (CMG), (now joined with Mercy Corps), a non-profit organization that seeks to minimize destructive conflict around the world. CMG has been involved in numerous areas of conflict, including South Africa, Ecuador, the Middle East and Croatia.

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