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Publication Date

Spring 2010

Degree Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Glenn M. Callaghan


Active Listening, Communication Model, Hostage Negotiation, Influencing Communication, Rapport Building, Surrender

Subject Areas

Communication; Psychology, Behavioral


This study sought to provide empirical support for the Four Phase Model of Hostage Negotiation introduced by Madrigal, Bowman, and McClain (2009). The model provides a framework of successful negotiation by analyzing and specifying the structure of previously successful negotiations. The resulting model consists of four phases called "Establishing Initial Dialogue," "Building Rapport," "Influencing," and "Surrender." Empirical investigation utilized the Crisis Communication Rating Scale (McClain, Callaghan, Madrigal, Unwin, & Castoreno, 2006), an observational coding system designed for examining communication behavior during a hostage negotiation. The data consisted of coded hostage negotiation transcripts and audio recordings with identifying markers removed. Coded transcripts were analyzed with groups of different codes representing different negotiation phases. The codes were divided into chunks of time and analyzed for proportions of codes that fall into different phases in order to verify existence of the different phases. Data supported that three of the four phases occur in hostage negotiation. Data suggests that additional analysis may support that the final phase also occurs in hostage negotiations.