chapter  2
15 Pages

Procedural Justice

ByTom R. Tyler

This chapter reviews the literature on procedural justice. It focuses on the role of procedural justice judgments in shaping people's reactions to the processes used to resolve conflicts within the legal system. Although the early work on procedural justice focused on the resolution of disputes, and hence was most directly relevant to civil cases, an important area into which the work was extended was the area of criminal trials. Not surprisingly, subsequent studies of everyday experiences with the police and courts, of the type illustrated by, show that procedural justice is key to people's willingness to defer to legal authorities. The procedural justice hypothesis goes against the strong intuition of many people that they and others are motivated by self-interest. In addition to expanding the conception of the subjective meaning of procedural justice, research has also expanded the range of issues to which the idea of procedural justice has been applied.