Social Theory and Practice

Volume 47, Issue 2, April 2021

Élise RouméasOrcid-ID
Pages 377-396

The Procedural Value of Compromise

Compromise is a valuable decision-making procedure. This article argues that its value lies in the norms of reciprocity and consent. Reciprocity structures the practice of concession-giving. Compliance with this tacit rule expresses an ethos of mutual concern and achieves a shared sense of fairness. Consent is a useful safeguard against asymmetric deals and makes compromise morally binding. The procedural value of compromise gives us important reasons to choose this method for resolving conflicts.