Honors Projects


Brian E. Kempfer


This paper examines the United States' negotiation strategy in the First Strategic Arms Limitation Talks. It uses a framework that combines Graham and Allison's bureaucratic politics model; negotiation theory articulated by Thompson; and a modified version of two level games as articulated by Knopf. This paper argues that these three frameworks reveal that the SALT negotiations required President Nixon to satisfy five different negotiating partners: the American bureaucracy, Congress, the American public, America's NATO Allies, and the Soviet Union. One must consider all of these five groups to avoid viewing American negotiating positions like the decision to offer to reduce their Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement (BATNA), the decision to not come up with a clear negotiating objective and the decision to deny the opportunity to "expand the pie" by including medium range nuclear weapons as irrational.



First Advisor

Walter E. Grunden

First Advisor Department


Second Advisor

Marc V. Simon

Second Advisor Department

Political Science

Publication Date

Spring 4-28-2013