Organizational justice and black applicants' reactions to affirmative action

Russell Cropanzano, Jerel E. Slaughter, Peter D. Bachiochi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Using organizational justice as a guiding framework, the authors studied perceptions of affirmative action programs by presumed beneficiaries. Three conceptual issues were addressed: (a) the content of different affirmative action plans; (b) the 3-way interaction among distributive, procedural, and interactional justice; and (c) the distinction between outcome favorability and distributive justice. These ideas were tested with a sample of Black engineering students who responded to 1 of 6 plans. Participants distinguished among the various plans, with some policies being viewed as more fair than others. In addition, a 3-way interaction among the 3 types of organizational justice was observed. Specifically, the 2-way interaction between distributive and interactional fairness was only significant when procedural justice was low. Implications for organizational justice and for the design of affirmative action programs are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1168-1184
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Applied Psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2005


  • Affirmative action
  • Diversity
  • Organizational justice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology


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