Distributive justice is one of two categories of justice or fairness, the other being retributive justice. Distributive justice refers to fairness in the allocation of the rewards or benefits of society or of an institution within society. For example, it is seen as fair that those student essays which best meet the criteria of academia should receive the best grades.
When Karl Marx asserts that workers produce value in a commodity which they do not receive and are thus exploited, he is concerned about distributive injustice.
Retributive justice, on the other hand, refers to fairness in the administration and imposition of punishment on those who have brought harm or negative consequences on individuals or society.
Retributive justice is seen as fair, for example, that those who violate the law should receive punishment. The criminal justice system can be thought of as the institutionalization of retributive justice.
Untangling Procedural and Distributive
Justice - Their Relative Effects on Gainsharing Satisfaction - Theresa
M.Welbourne, Cornell U.
The second view is that distributive justice is more important when an outcome is high or positive, and procedural justice is more important when an outcome is low or negative. This study examined of the effects of procedural and distributive justice on satisfaction with gainsharing, which involves a group-based outcome.
of Distributive Justice - Experiments in Poland and America