Expanding or postponing: patterns of negotiation in multi-party interactions in social work

Dorte Caswell, Tanja Dall Jensen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    In this paper, we examine patterns of negotiation in multi-party interaction in social work. We draw on Strauss’ theory of negotiated order and a conversation analytical approach, seeking to gain insight into the complex accomplishment of making a decision in an inter-professional and multiparty setting. Working with data from 97 team meetings in a social work setting, we identify two patterns of negotiation in talk; expanding and postponing. ‘Expanding’ covers a group of interactional actions involving turn-taking and closure, while ‘postponing’ includes a group of actions whereby assessments or topics are avoided or made irrelevant. Both are examples of the complex ways in which team members negotiate both the institutional order and the decision to be made in the specific case in situ.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalDiscourse & Communication
    Issue number5
    Pages (from-to)483-497
    Number of pages15
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

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