|Definition (Myers): "A condition in which people receive from a relationship in proportion to what they give to it"|
|Definition (alternative): "A theory of social justice according to which people perceive a situation as fair when their own ration of outcomes to inputs is the same as those of others with whom they compare themselves"|
In a relationship, people feel the happiest when the give and take are about equal. The person who gets little are unhappy while the person who gets a lot feels guilty (reinforced by strong social norms about fairness).
Outcomes (receipts) - material benefits, social status, and intrinsic rewards
Inputs (contributions) - material contributions, seniority, education, skills, and effort
Inequality makes people feel uncomfortable and pushes them to act towards restoring equity by altering inputs/outcomes, leaving the situation, attempting to distort the other person's perception of inputs or outcomes, or changing the person.
Two questions that deal with the equity theory:
#1 What do people think is fair and equitable?
#2 How do they respond when they feel they are getting far more or far less from their relationships than they deserve? How do they react when they see their fellows reaping undeserved benefits - or enduring undeserved suffering?
|Related terms and concepts:|
|Edited by: Eungi|
|Date of last edit: November 29, 2009|