The Role of Justice in Negotiation

Chapter

Abstract

This chapter discusses the role of justice in negotiation between rival parties and the durability of peace agreements. It draws on research about group negotiation processes and agreements to end civil wars, mostly during the early 1990s. Hypothesized relationships between the presence and importance of distributive justice (DJ) in the agreements, and their durability, were first explored with multiple methods (see also the chapter by koeszegi and Vetschera, this volume). The difficulty of the conflict environment was shown to have the strongest impact on durability. However, the DJ principle of equality was found to reduce the negative impact of difficult environments. An emphasis on equality was also associated with more forward-looking agreements, which were found to be more durable than those that were backward looking. (See also the chapters by Nurmi, Klamber, Kilgour and Hipel, Turel, and Yuan, this volume for modeling approaches to issues of justice and fairness.) Next, the presence and importance of procedural justice (PJ) were examined in the negotiation processes that led to the signing of the peace agreements. Significantly more durable agreements occurred when a process based on PJ led to agreements that emphasized equality. This focus on process is similar to the analyses conducted by the authors chapters (See also the chapter by Koeszegi and Vetschera, Kersten and Lai, this volume). A close examination of how the equality principle was applied revealed that agreements based on provisions of equal treatment and/or equal shares were particularly durable. The chapter concludes with a discussion of tactics used by third parties to produce durable agreements, and lessons for policy.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Peace and Conflict ResearchUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Department of Public and International AffairsGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA
  3. 3.Public Memory Research CentreUniversity of Southern QueenslandToowoobaAustralia

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