To compromise is to make a deal where one person gives up part of his or her demand. In arguments, compromise is a concept of finding agreement through communication, through a mutual acceptance of terms, while often involving variations from an original goal or desire. Extremism is often considered as antonym to compromise, which, depending on context, may be associated with concepts of balance or tolerance. In the negative connotation, compromise may be referred to as capitulation, referring to a "surrender" of objectives, principles, or material, in the process of negotiating an agreement. In human relationships, "compromise" is frequently said to be an agreement that no party is happy with, this is because the parties involved often feel that they either gave away too much or that they received too little.
From cultural background and influences, the meaning and perception of the word "compromise" may be different: In the UK, Ireland and Commonwealth countries, the word "compromise" has a positive meaning (as a consent, an agreement where both parties win something); in the U.S., it can have rather negative connotations, as in "compromising principles" as a sell-out of basic beliefs.
Studies in compromise[change | edit source]
Research has indicated that less-than-optimal compromises are often the result of negotiators failing to realize when they have interests that are completely compatible with those of the other party, and hence, they settle for suboptimal agreements. Mutually-better outcomes can often be found by careful study of both parties' interests, especially if done early in negotiations. 
Related pages[change | edit source]
- Three-Fifths Compromise (USA)
- Missouri Compromise (USA)
- Compromise of 1850 (USA)
- Compromise of 1867 (Austria-Hungary)
References[change | edit source]
- Global Knowledge (2008). "Methods of Dealing with Conflict - Part II". PM Hut. http://www.pmhut.com/methods-of-dealing-with-conflict-part-ii. Retrieved 2010-01-11.
- Thompson, Leigh; R. Hastie (1990). "Organizational Behavior & Human Decision Processes (Issue 47)". Social perception in negotiation. Academic Press. pp. 98–123. http://www.leighthompson.com/publications/pub90d.htm. Retrieved 2009-08-17.