new link as of March 1, 2019
broken links here
Activities and Exercises
Conflict & Peacemaking - A small collection of assignments instructors created to teach students to be more receptive to the views of others, and to be able to distinguish fact from fake news
Responding to conflict with kindness - "When people act hostile towards us we tend to act hostile in return. . . . But what happens when we engage in noncomplementarity (or noncomplementary behavior); what happens when we don't match the tone coming at us?"
The power of words
Professor's exam question - Professor offers 2 or 6 extra credits points on the students' final paper grade. But if more than 10% select 6 points then no one gets any extra points.
in-class experiments - [added 3/2/15]
Oranges Activity - Activity addresses conflict resolution
and group decision making -- provided by Valerie Pruegger. [added
- not only can you play the game, but you can manipulate a number
of variables and select different strategies at this site
prisoner's dilemma - play the game; includes links to explanations
- To illustrate how easily and quickly we form ingroups and outgroups,
I divide my class into those wearing tennis shoes that day and
those not wearing tennis shoes. Then I have each group sit in
a circle with its members. The "tennis shoe" group is assigned
to list as many reasons as it can think of as to why the members
of the other group did not wear tennis shoes that day.
The non-tennis shoe group is assigned to list as many reasons
as it can as to why the other group members are wearing
tennis shoes. The listing starts out fairly neutral, but it is
not long before each group's list becomes more and more derogatory,
particularly when it overhears the list the other group is generating.
Resources (Video / Images)
resolution - a podcast on the topic from Michael Britt [added
- This site contains lots of print, audio and video resources
from journalists who claim to be providing an independent voice
and alternative perspective on Iraq. In their words, "With
Washington on the verge of seeking to destroy an already devastated
country, a group of independent journalists and activists -
spearheaded by Voices in the Wilderness and the Iraq Peace Team
- are breaking ranks with the war chorus." [added
Cross-Cultural Understanding Through Facebook - This project also
won honorable mention for the 2013 Social Psychology Network Action
Teaching Award. "This assignment uses social media to give students
a chance to have meaningful cross-cultural interactions while learning
about social psychology and ways to promote international dialogue,
peace, and social justice. In this particular case, a Facebook page
was co-developed by psychology classes in Egypt and the United States,
and student groups in each class were asked to design a program that
would improve relationships between Muslims and non-Muslim Westerners
by using what they had learned about (1) the causes of prejudice and
intergroup conflict, and (2) methods for reducing prejudice and making
peace. After students designed their programs, they discussed them
in class and then posted their ideas to the Facebook page for comments
by students from the other country. As a result of this cross-cultural
exchange, students often reported that they had not only learned about
psychology of prejudice reduction but that their own prejudices had
been reduced. As one student summed up the experience in her final
Facebook post: 'thank you all for teaching so much in such a short
period of time! I learned a lot about you and about myself from this
project, and I know that the lessons I learned will stay with me for
the rest of my life.'" [added 8/9/13]
Lessons from the Holocaust to Reduce Bullying - The final honorable
mention from the 2007 Action Teaching Award was given to Ruth T. Hannon
for her creative assignment in her Perspectives of the Holocaust course.
From the proposal: "Over the next several class sessions, our
college students meet in small groups to design projects to be taken
to the middle school. Their task is to use lessons from the Holocaust
to teach about the dynamics of prejudice, hate speech, and bullying
close to home. For example, our students have spoken about the psychology
of conformity and depicted how conformity operates in bullying situations.
Middle school students come to see the power of conformity in such
situations, and they learn ways to resist being drawn into bullying
behaviors. Lively discussions follow and, oftentimes, middle schoolers
share stories about bullying they've witnessed." [added
Collection of assignments on accepting/recognizing views of others - A small collection of assignments instructors created to teach students to be more receptive to the views of others, and to be able to distinguish fact from fake news
Superordinate goal and ingroup/outgroup - This blog entry discusses the U.S.'s current debates over refugees and Muslims.
Superordinate goals - Applies research on breaking down group lines and finding common external threats to the Hillary Clinton/Bernie Sanders rift
goal - Cleaning up after a tornado brings divided town together.
Through working at Macy's [a department store], I have learned that
niceness does not always lead you to the best outcome for every
situation. Every time we clock into work, we have a sales goal that
we have to obtain by the time our shift is over. Because of this,
if we are working with someone else we are faced with the dilemma
of amicably working together with the coworker or to compete with
them in order to more surely meet our sales goal. In the past, I
have always been used to fully cooperating with my coworkers in
order to get the job done more effectively. Not until I have been
thrown into the shark tank that is the retail workplace that have
I been faced with the idea that I must make sure that one person
doesn't take all of the department's sales away from me while I
am working on something else away from the register. In order to
get around this large barrier between us and to establish understanding
that both of us need to meet a certain goal, I always ask how the
other person is doing for the day and how much more money he or
she needs to bring in. By doing this, I make the person aware of
how he/she needs to either pick up the pace or slow down and allow
me a chance to ring some transactions. This way, I can stay competitive
with my sales intake while remaining friendly and cooperative with
the person that I am working with. Another way to keep the balance
of competition and cooperation in the department is to ask each
customer if anyone else has been assisting or working with them
to make their visit more enjoyable. If the customer says that they
really did not need help so no one assisted them, then I can ring
them up without hesitation. However, if someone has been helping
them, then it is only fair to let the person helping them ring them
up because they were the ones who earned the money from the transaction.
With this, a lot of trust is built up between people in the store,
trust that other people will pull their own slack and trust that
they will only build their sales goal with the customers that they
have helped or with the customers that had no significant assistance
from any other coworker. [added 12/17/12]
to outgroup - A Muslim reality show, "All-American Muslim,"
will be appearing on TLC beginning November 13, 2011. Will it help
reduce conflict or prejudice or discrimination? Who will watch it?
Some research possibilities there for you or your students. [added
incentives for cooperation or conciliation - "Rice, in
Nairobi, offers incentives to end violence." [added
Arab and Israeli cooperation - interesting example of "peacebuilding
through health initiatives"
and competition are very important in a job related atmosphere.
Cooperation is something a small group within the office I work
in is in need of. This group has five girls in it which are all
competitive. The team effort belief in this part of our company
is diminishing. The problem seems to be that the girls are afraid
to cooperate because they won't get the credit or be recognized
individually for their effort or ideas. Some social loafing is taking
place. They are so eager to do well and improve that they tend to
do their jobs ignoring all factors around their areas except their
own. They are afraid to communicate or trust because someone might
steal their idea or rework it. In addition, the males in our office
tend to cooperate more than the females. I believe that females
feel they must be more competitive to be noticed in our office.
However, this competitiveness, lack of trust and communication is
hurting their cooperation levels. Many times the girls refuse to
talk and just clam up with one another. This creates gates or blocks
in good working habits and therefore poor performance. In addition,
this attitude expands and turns into threats like "Well, I'm just
not going to do it" or "It's not my job." Unfortunately, these threats
reduce the chance of cooperation. However, I believe the girls are
basically competitive and there is no hatred as an outsider might
think just by hearing or observing this situation. In addition,
I believe this problem is going to be tackled soon. A meeting is
going to take place on Tuesday of next week for these five girls.
Finally, this mess was brought to a manager's attention (his eyes
are usually closed to problems until they're overwhelming -- yet,
another problem area). He realized that there are some problems
and that most of all the competition within this group has brought
about hostility. He is going to bring them together (the meeting)
which is one good starting approach to get these girls back on track.
I'm sure he is going to then force them to cooperate or else. I'm
sure it will work.
Superordinate goal and ingroup/outgroup - This blog entry discusses the U.S.'s current debates over refugees and Muslims.
bias - It used to be that voters would say "throw those bums
in Congress out, but keep mine." Now, even that is changing.
bias - When I was in Grammar School, it was the biggest
deal to be part of the popular group; that’s all I ever wanted.
Finally, after years of trying I made it in this distinctive group.
This is the perfect example for the Ingroup/Outgroup. In order to
be in our group, which by the way we called ourselves the “perfect
10” because there were ten of us, you had to be and act a
certain way. Your hair had to be done a certain way, it had to be
a certain color, and on various days we all planned to wear matching
items. One particular day I remember was a Friday, we called it
“crazy pants day.” We all had to wear tight animal print
pants and a black top. Everyone wanted to be a part of this group.
If you weren’t in it, we were making fun of you, whether it
was how you looked, who you hung out with, or just for who you were.
We were awful little girls. I remember one day, the day we wore
the crazy pants, a few teachers overheard what we were planning
and planned to wear matching outfits that same Friday. It’s
quite odd looking back and realizing just how big of an impact we
had even on adults. By no means am I saying this was a good thing.
There are many days where I wish I could take it all back. Why do
we have to have these groups, that make others just feel terrible?
What was it that gave this group I was in all the power? Even though
I was a very mean little girl, I believe if I hadn’t have
had experiences like this I wouldn’t be who I am today. Finally
I left the “Perfect 10” because I couldn’t take
making fun of others for no apparent reason, and now I don’t
really judge anybody without getting to know them. [added
power of symbols - Here's an interesting story of a couple in
Colorado who have been threatened with a fine by the homeowners
association if they do not take down their Christmas wreath shaped
like a peace sign "that some say is an anti-Iraq protest or a symbol
of Satan." [12/27/06]
of the Commons
Tragedy of the commons - and climate change
Tragedy of the Commons, use of norms, fear appeals, and more - David Myers shares this example from Cape Town’s severe water shortage and its efforts to encourage citizens to conserve.
the environment - Amusing example from The Onion: "How
bad for the environment can throwing away one plastic bottle be?"
30 million people wonder. [added 2/6/10]
Dilemma - David Myers pointed me to this game show which apparently
forces contestants into a sort of prisoner's dilemma at the end
of each game, with communication permitted. See the very interesting
strategy this particular contestant uses. [added
the months since my daughter started back to school, I've been experiencing
a mini-Prisoner's Dilemma. Every month the school sends home a notice
pleading for volunteers for the Picture-Parent Program. (Once a
month a parent would show a print by a famous artist to the class,
giving details about the work of art, the artist, etc.) Every month
I have been selfish and ignored the requests, hoping that someone
else's parent will volunteer. (Partly I have ignored the requests
because I truly don't have time since I'm enrolled full time at
NCC. Partly I've ignored the requests because of a stereotype that
I have about the typical suburban housewife -- lots of free time
to fritter away here and there on nonessentials.) They have more
time than I do; therefore, let them do it. Well, evidently, they
are being selfish also because yesterday a final notice came home
from school. My daughter's class still does not have a volunteer.
Unless someone responds this week, her class will miss out on this
"valuable learning experience." Thus comes the Prisoner's Dilemma.
If I continue to be "selfish," it's the best thing for me but bad
for my daughter's class. If I don't ignore it and the other's don't
ignore it, then that's best for the school but not for me. If we
all ignore it (which we have so far) it's bad for the school but
better for me than if I don't ignore it but the others do. They
will be following their most selfish strategy and I will be mad.
So far we have both been following our most dominant strategy --
ignore the notice. What to do now?! Another reason I have for not
wanting to volunteer is that I fear they will use the foot-in-the-door
technique. They'll start off with just being a Picture-Parent. It
only takes one hour per month and you care about your child's education,
don't you? Then once they've got you at the school, they start lowering
the boom with project after project that needs your help. You start
off slowly just helping out and before you know it; somehow, you're
the chairperson of the committee running the project yourself. My
initial commitment to the school would cause me to be consistent.
I know it's all happened before.
reading about the blacktop illusion I couldn't help but think about
the Bears and Packers. After the initial emotions died down when
Charles Martin body slammed Jim McMahon a couple years ago, most
people, and especially the Bear players, felt the whole incident
was the Green Bay coach's fault. Everyone was blaming Forrest Gregg
for instilling evil in the hearts of his players and teaching them
to play dirty. The Bears must have felt the players were just normal
people like themselves so the Green Bay players must have been mislead
by the coaching staff.
Competition - a series of articles on research related to competition, from APS
Monkeys dislike unequal pay (2:43) - Hilarious video – wait, I’m going to go watch it again!
Behind the scenes of the Robbers Cave study - I cannot vouch for the accuracy of this story, but it provides an interesting look into some unknown details of the famous Sherif study at the Robbers Cave summer camp.
Identity versus issues - According to this study, U.S. politics has become more about identity with a particular party or group and less about the issues. As we know, identity is far more powerful.
The power of the concept of a caliphate for ISIS recruiting - very interesting analysis of the ingroup appeal of the caliphate and how its destruction affects its appeal
"Cooperation driven by reciprocity, not conformity" - "New research suggests that reciprocity - cooperation under the assumption that we will receive benefits in return - outweighs our desire to conform with group norms when we are deciding whether to cooperate with someone."
Who names a group? Who generates its euphemisms? - Alt-right. Alt-left. Social Psychologists. This interesting blog entry discusses the sociology of group naming.
Us vs. Them and terrorism - another good essay on how framing the world as us versus them does not help address terrorism
Ingroup-congruent behavior less memorable than ingroup-incongruent behavior - According to this research, we remember when you violate our ingroup expectations.
How do Americans feel about social and political activism? - a blog entry on the topic
4-year-olds are loyal to their group
inequality has reached extreme levels" - a report from Oxfam
International [added 3/2/15]
is there so much animosity between groups that seem so similar?"
- very good essay by David Myers [added 3/2/15]
Robbers Cave study - a good historical review of the classic study
-- h/t Michael Britt [added 2/18/14]
diversity undermine community trust?" - [added
hunger lead to hoarding or sharing? - Blog entry looks at some
interesting research on the question. [added 8/9/13]
not to pat someone on the shoulder" - blog entry describes
some interesting research about how touching in a competitive situation
can be interpreted negatively [added
ways the Internet is dividing us - good description of hidden
and not-so-hidden ways the online world can create division between
us -- h/t Melissa Ross [added
missile crisis - 50 years - With an Iranian crisis brewing, it
may be worth looking back at the Cuban missile crisis. Foreign Policy
provides some good resources for doing so. [added
psychology of revenge - Good APS Observer article
Conflict and Cooperation - a lot of reports and other resources
from the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation at the University
of California [added
Peacemaker's Toolkit - "With five volumes now published,
the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) releases its new and growing
"Peacemaker’s Toolkit," a multivolume series of handbooks
for people working in conflict zones around the world. Already, even
with several more volumes to come, the series is the most definitive
compilation of guidance in existence for international mediators."
initial preferences - This blog entry summarizes the research
by recommending "don't start group discussions by sharing initial
preferences." Why, what happens? Nope, not going to tell you.
You have to go read it. [added
survey of peacefulness - This survey, from the Vision of Humanity/Economist
Intelligence Unit/Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, ranks nations
on peacefulness. Should be a good lesson in operational definitions
as well. [added 8/05/07]
California's prisons - Interesting forced "experiment"
California is about to undertake in 2006. Most prisons are heavily
segregated to reduce violence. What will happen? Read also about Texas'
experience with such desegregation. [added
immigrants in U.S. vs. France - This publication from the RAND
Corporation, "Assimilating immigrants: Why America can and France
cannot," compares the success and failure of the two countries
to responding to mass immigration. [added 1/15/06]
are rivalries so intense?" - Unfortunately, this article
does little to answer the title question, but it does describe a variety
of rivalries in college football. Provides for interesting conversation
about the topic. [added 1/13/06]
law and order after conflict" - a 2005 RAND report describing
and analyzing efforts at reconstruction in Iraq, Afghanistan, and
Kosovo [added 1/8/06]
with the Muslim world - This report draws on focus groups in the
Muslim world to identify strategies to open a dialogue between the
U.S. and the Muslim world and to reduce anti-American sentiment. [added
Muslim response to 9/11 - "The following web page is produced
through the cooperation of over 50 professors of Islamic Studies and
Middle Eastern Studies from the US and Canada. These scholars are
members of the Study of Islam section at the American Academy of Religion,
the largest international organization responsible for the academic
study of religion." Lots of articles, statements and images.
of Infamy: December 7 and 9/11 - comparison of two infamous days
in American history -- hear the voices of people immediately following
each event, and more [added 12/1/04]
Conflict Map - From the Nobel Foundation, this interactive map
allows you to trace and read about major conflicts of the 20th century
as well as view the geographic origins of Nobel Peace Prize winners.
- "INCORE (International Conflict Research) was set up in 1993
by the University of Ulster and the United Nations University to undertake
research and policy work that is useful to the resolution of ethnic,
political and religious conflicts. Currently, INCORE's research focuses
mainly on post conflict issues, issues of governance and diversity,
and research methodology in violent societies." Lots of good
resources on conflict and peacemaking can be found here including
the "Ethnic Conflict Research Digest" which reviews research
and publications on ethnic conflict and the "Conflict Data Service"
which provides extensive examples of ongoing conflicts and peace agreements
that have been created. [added 4/5/04]
- okay, this site isn't directly related to social psych, but if you
are dealing with international issues and you and your students need
to learn more about certain countries, this is a great place to begin
- plus, its tagline is "eradicate conflict by building cultural
awareness" [added 3/21/02]
on conflicts and crises around the world presented by the International
Crisis Group [added 3/6/02]
for Collaborative Organizations
- articles, research projects and links on work teams
- search at Project Gutenberg for two classic articles from Gustave
- excellent PBS resource "A Force More Powerful: A Century of
Nonviolent Conflict" covers South Africa, Gandhi's resistance
in India, and other examples
war of ideas in the war on terror - [added
towards U.S. in Muslim world - This report, "Negative attitudes
toward the United States in the Muslim world: Do they matter?,"
addresses a survey conducted by World Public Opinion.org. [added
Truth - Personal stories and issues from the troops who served
or are serving in Iraq [added 12/1/04]
- This site contains lots of print, audio and video resources from
journalists who claim to be providing an independent voice and alternative
perspective on Iraq. In their words, "With Washington on the
verge of seeking to destroy an already devastated country, a group
of independent journalists and activists - spearheaded by Voices in
the Wilderness and the Iraq Peace Team - are breaking ranks with the
war chorus." [added 12/06/02]
prisoners' dilemma - Lots of examples and resources related to
the prisoners' dilemma [added 3/30/04]
- not only can you play the game, but you can manipulate a number
of variables and select different strategies at this site
prisoner's dilemma - play the game; includes links to explanations
dilemma - explanation and a few links
in Western Sahara - "It is a disputed territory on the north-west
corner of Africa, on the western edge of the Sahara Desert, where
it meets the Atlantic Ocean - not far from the Canary Islands. Morocco
says it governed the region before colonial rule and is therefore
part of its territory. But the Polisario Front is fighting for the
region's independence and its supporters say the dispute is Africa's
only remaining fight against colonial rule." Here
is more info on the conflict. [added
Multicultural society has failed - That is the German Chancellor
claiming that attempts to build a multicultural society in Germany
have not worked. [added
stops humanitarian flotilla; violence erupts - This just happened
today. Apparently, organizers of the flotilla of ships were challenging
the Israelis' blockade of Gaza to bring attention to the plight of
those living there. Will such a strategy succeed? As the above article
notes, will the death of non-Palestinians make it more likely that
the world will pay attention? Here
is video from the confrontation. [added
least 500 dead in Nigeria - as a result of religious and ethnic
conflict in Northern Ireland - This link from BBC News Online.
is more on the conflict from The Art Gallery, University of Maryland.
from PBS. [added 3/8/10]
and politics in Northern Ireland (1968 to present) - Lots of good,
well-organized resources on the conflict [added 1/18/10]
Iraq, and Pakistan - a lot of good up-to-date information on the
ongoing conflicts in these countries [added 7/17/09]
A battle in the war for Pakistan" - a good report from the
Council on Foreign Relations regarding the India-Pakistan conflict
and related issues [4/17/09]
conflict - good background info in a report from the U.S. Congressional
Research Service [added 11/21/08]
Malay-Muslim insurgency in Southern Thailand -- Understanding the
conflict's evolving dynamic" - a report from the RAND Corporation
fanaticism - an interesting essay by David Myers on why "fans
sulk in defeat and exult in victory" [added
Gaza: The challenge of clans and families" - [added
traveler's dilemma - Dilemma about two travelers who find... well,
you can read about it, and some research connected to this dilemma.
vs. older workers - Interesting studies: "The population
of most developed societies is 'graying'. As life expectancy increases
and the large baby-boom generation approaches retirement age, this
has critical consequences for maintaining a high standard of living
and the sustainability of pension systems. In the light of these labor-force
and social concerns, we consider experimentally the comparative behavior
of juniors (under 30) and seniors (over 50) in both experiments conducted
onsite with the employees of two large firms and in a conventional
laboratory environment with students and retirees. Our results are
compelling. First, seniors are not more risk-averse, as opposed to
the conventional stereotype. Second, both juniors and seniors react
to the competitiveness of the environment and there is no significant
difference in performance in the real-effort task across the generations
when they are competing. Third, seniors are typically more cooperative
than juniors in a team-production game. Cooperation is highest in
groups in which there is a mix of juniors and seniors, suggesting
that there are indeed benefits in maintaining a work force with diversity
in age." [added 7/7/07]
- Here's some information on the crisis in the Darfur region of Sudan.
the toilet seat down - Oh, you didn't realize this issue was ultimately
one of game theory and conflict resolution? Read on... [added
Middle East Buddy List
- Slate.com has created this unique presentation of the different
parties in the Middle East. Find out who is friend or enemy of whom,
or maybe "it's complicated." [added 12/22/06]
- "Hizbollah's outlook in the current conflict" is a report
from Amal Saad-Ghorayeb, an assistant professor at the Lebanese American
University. Saad-Ghorayeb attempts to answer questions about the motives
and objectives of Hizbollah in the current Hizbollah/Israeli conflict.
This report is from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Westerners and Muslims view each other - a report of attitudes
from the Pew Global Attitudes Project - a lot of interesting data
in Turkey - "The anatomy of anti-Americanism in Turkey"
is a report from The Brookings Institution. [added
in France (2005) - info and photos about the riots in France -
more info can be found here
religious conflict" - A brief text from the RAND Corporation,
it "reports the result of a workshop that brought together intelligence
analysts and experts on religion with the goal of providing background
and a frame of reference for assessing religious motivations in international
politics and discovering what causes religiously rooted violence and
how states have sought to take advantage of or contain religious violence
— with emphasis on radical Islam." [added
between China and Japan - Find lots of resources from the BBC
on ongoing conflicts between China and Japan, the trigger being "Japan's
decision to approve eight new school textbooks, which critics say
gloss over the country's actions before and during World War II."
Korea nuclear crisis - another BBC News treatment of the crisis
(2005), with timeline and related stories [added 6/17/05]
crisis - (2005) [added 6/17/05]
Cuban Missile Crisis - Declassified documents, audio clips, chronology,
analysis and more from an exhibit "The Cuban Missile Crisis,
1962: The 40th Anniversary" from the National Security Archive
at George Washington University [added 12/1/04]
Chechen conflict - a good set of resources from the BBC on events
Sudan conflict - a report from the British House of Commons [added
News country profiles - The BBC News site is a rich source of
information about conflicts around the world. One good resource is
the Country Profiles section which provides your students with background
info about any country which can help them understand past and present
conflicts. Then, beyond the background info, the site provides in
depth information on current conflicts such as the Nepal
Conflict and Israel
and the Palestinians. [added 6/9/04]
at 50: King's dream or Plessy's nightmare?" - A report (2004)
from The Civil Rights Project at Harvard University describes findings
that gains in desegregation peaked in the late 1980s in the United
States and has since declined to the level it was in 1969, the year
after Martin Luther King’s assassination. Furthermore, whites
have very little contact with minorities in most places in the U.S.
and Peacemaking: Cuban Missile Crisis - The Washington Post has
made available its actual newspaper reports from 1962 coverage of
Cuban missile crisis [added 12/03/02]
of Apple Computing
- interesting case of group conflict and other processes as told by
Glen Sanford [added 3/6/02]
Conflict and Cooperation: The Robbers Cave Experiment" -
classic article from Muzafer Sherif et al.
look at Sherifs' Robbers Cave studies - an interesting retelling
taking into account the Sherifs' earlier studies [added
the Mask: The IRA and Sinn Fein" - PBS Frontline show (1998)
on conflict in Northern Ireland
/ Reducing Conflict
“More unites us than divides us” - “A new study suggests that diverse groups around the world share more in common in terms of their beliefs and values than polarised reporting too often suggests.”
"Anger derails negotiations, unless you have a plan"
"The seven habits of highly depolarizing people" - Here are some very good suggestions for persuading or working with those who are quite polarized in their views. I was going to say "provide alternate facts," but this is probably better advice.
Is cooperation more likely after more or less deliberation? - Research says... "making decisions based on intuition significantly increased rates of cooperation, but only under circumstances where self-interest was always the best option. When people had time to has out all the details in these situations, they were far less cooperative."
"Six elements to make your apology optimal"
Reducing conflict through intergroup contact - recent research conducted in the field
The power of intergroup contact - Another, recent meta-analysis of intergroup contact research again found it can be quite effective in reducing such conflict.
to make the first offer - "A subsequent analysis of the negotiations
conducted between those who were diametrically opposed clearly showed
that the negotiator who made the opening offer, on average, benefitted
to the tune of $5.60 million more than his opponent. A clear First-Mover
Advantage. However the opposite was the case for the negotiation parties
who shared compatible views. In these situations the party making the
opening offer ended up with significantly less value. What the authors
coined a First Mover Disadvantage." [added 3/2/15]
gossip promote cooperation? - Research suggests that the threat
of ostracism behind some gossip discourages self-interest and encourages
cooperation. [added 2/18/14]
cooperation among rivals - an essay from subscriber Steve Martin
at the Influence at Work site [added 2/18/14]
eyes 'deter' Newcastle University bike thieves" - Lots of possible
research variations with this idea -- very cool. [added
new nuanced view of oxytocin's effects on social behavior - a brief
summary of a talk which reviews what we currently know about oxytocin
and social behavior [added 8/9/13]
a burned-out Mosque - This columnist argues that "helping a
burned-to-the-ground Missouri mosque quickly re-build would make a powerful
and constructive statement." [added
handshake as contract - [added 5/30/11]
over computers: Distance matters - "Negotiations that take
place over computer, without face-to-face contact, have more chance
of success when those negotiating think there is greater physical distance
between each other. That's according to Marlone Henderson who says the
new finding is compatible with Construal Level Theory. This is the discovery
that people think about things more abstractly when they perceive that
they're further away in time or space (e.g. see earlier). In terms of
negotiations, thinking more abstractly is beneficial because it encourages
negotiators to reflect on and express their underlying motives and priorities."
Muslims protect Coptic Christians - [added 5/30/11]
Institute for Strategic Dialogue - another think-tank producing
reports and research on international conflict [added
leads to oxytocin in bloodstream which leads to trust - Alert: Before
reading the above article, have someone massage your shoulders. I wouldn't
lie to you. [added
is declining - Here is an interesting essay by Steven Pinker in
which he argues that despite the constant barrage of violent images
and stories the historical record suggests we have become less violent
than our ancestors. [added 1/16/10]
radicalisation and political violence - The mission of The International
Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence is "to
challenge the growth of radicalisation and political violence by bringing
together the world's most innovative thinkers from academia, politics
and business." Good publications and other resources here.
going to Mecca make Muslims more moderate?" - First, nice alliteration
in that headline! Second, I like when naturally occurring random assignment
makes such studies possible. [4/17/09]
things cost $19.95" - another interesting recap of research
from Wray Herbert's APS blog "We're only human" [added
in Kenya - The first link is to a news story about the violence
in Kenya. Here
is a link to an analysis, "Breaking the stalemate in Kenya,"
which explores how the crisis evolved and how it might be resolved.
and restraint in strategic deterrance" - From a game-theorist's
perspective, this report is from the Strategic Studies Institute, U.S.
Army War College. [added 3/21/08]
integration - a series of seven papers addressing issues related
to Muslim integration in Europe and the U.S., from the Center for Strategic
and International Studies [added 12/9/07]
10 solutions - a report from the 2007 Carnegie International Nonproliferation
Conference in which participants identified the top ten solutions to
current challenges, including
* Top 3 Upcoming Challenges to the Nonproliferation Regime
* Top 3 Best New Policy Proposals
* Top 4 High Impact Ideas to Implement by 2010 [added
"Survey: U.S. Muslims assimilated"
- "Unlike Muslim minorities in many European countries, U.S. Muslims
are highly assimilated, close to parity with other Americans in income
and overwhelmingly opposed to Islamic extremism, according to the first
major, nationwide random survey of Muslims." [added
of U.N. peace programs? - a report from The World Bank on the short-term
and long-term effects of U.N. peace operations -- conclusion? Very effective
in the short-term, but long-term effects dissipate [added
evolved from competition? - an article describing research suggesting
that altruism may have arisen from its superiority over selfishness
when competing for resources with other groups [added
of punishment on cooperation - A study reported in Scientific American
found that "the threat of penalty is the key to successful cooperation."
communities - "Beyond 50: A report to the livable communities:
Creating environments for successful aging" from AARP (American
Association of Retired People) attempts "to articulate a vision
of livable communities for persons of all ages, and particularly for
people age 50 and older." [added 9/20/05]
Institute of Peace - reports and other resources [added
coalitions: Cooperation with Pakistan and India" - From the
Rand Corporation, "the study examines U.S. strategic relations
with India and Pakistan both historically and in the current context
of the global war on terrorism. An inescapable conclusion of the report
is that the intractable dispute over the disposition of Kashmir remains
a critical flashpoint between India and Pakistan and a continual security
challenge. The author offers five policy options on how the United States
might proceed." [added 3/20/05]
to peace psychology resources - nice set of links from Scott Plous
and the Social Psychology Network on peace, conflict resolution, terrorism
and nonviolence [added 12/1/04]
social science can reduce terrorism" - Here is an interesting
article by Scott Plous and Phil Zimbardo published in The Chronice of
Higher Education. A less graphic-intense version can be found here.
on racial and ethnic integration in U.S. metropolitan areas - "Living
together: A new look at racial and ethnic integration in metropolitan
neighborhoods, 1990-2000" is an analysis of census data from the
Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy at The Brookings Institution.
among the baboons - interesting article of possible cultural transmission
of female baboons' attempt to induce more cooperation from male baboons
resolution resources - CRInfo provides an extensive set of links
and resources on conflict resolution. Provided by the Conflict Resolution
Consortium at the University of Colorado, this site contains well organized
sets of links on many related topics, links to current news on the topic,
lists of relevant print resources, and advice on how to use these resources
for a variety of different audiences. [added 7/23/03]
International Peace Research Institute [added 12/06/02]
Endowment for International Peace [added 12/06/02]
Joan B. Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies [added
in the Schools: Reducing Conflict with Student Problem Solving"
- report from the U.S. Dept. of Justice (1999)
Books, and Book Chapters (available online)
M., Harvey, O. J., White, B. J., Hood, W. R.,
& Sherif, C. W. (1961). "Intergroup
Conflict and Cooperation: The Robbers Cave Experiment".
Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Book Exchange.
J.T., Burgess, D., & Mosso, C. (2001). Conflicts
of legitimation among self, group, and system:
The integrative potential of system justification
theory. In J.T. Jost and B. Major (Eds.),
The psychology of legitimacy: Emerging perspectives
on ideology, justice, and intergroup relations
(pp. 363-388). New York: Cambridge University
Lange, P. A. M., De Cremer, D., & Van Dijk,
E., & Van Vugt, M. (2007). Self-interest
and beyond: Basic principles of social interaction.
In E.T. Higgins & A. W. Kruglanski (Eds),
Social Psychology: Handbook of Basic Principles
(pp. 540-561). New York: Guilford.
Vugt, M., Biel, A., Snyder, M., & Tyler, T.
on cooperation in modern society: Helping the
self, community, and society. In M. Van Vugt,
M. Snyder, T. Tyler & A. Biel (Eds.), Cooperation
in modern society: Promoting the welfare of communities,
states, and organisations. London: Routledge.
Vugt, M., & De Cremer, D. (2002). Leadership
in social dilemmas: Comparing the instrumental
and relational perspectives. In M. Hewstone
& W. Stroebe (Eds.), European Review of
Social Psychology, Vol. 13 (pp. 155-184).
Philadelphia: Psychology Press.
Vugt, M., Johnson, D., Kaiser, R., & O'Gorman,
R. (2008). Evolution
and the social psychology of leadership: The mismatch
hypothesis. In Hoyt, C., Forsyth, D., &
Goethals, A. Social Psychology of Leadership.
New York: Praeger Perspectives.
Vugt, M., & Kurzban, R. K. (2007). Cognitive
and social adaptations for leadership and followership:
Evolutionary game theory and group dynamics.
In J. Forgas, W. von Hippel, & M. Haselton,
Sydney symposium of Social Psychology, Vol.
9: The evolution of the social mind: Evolutionary
psychology and social cognition (pp. 229-244).
London: Psychology Press.
Vugt, M., & Park. J. (2008). The
tribal instinct hypothesis: Evolution and the
social psychology of intergroup relations.
In S. Sturmer & M. Snyder, New Directions
in Helping and Intergroup Behavior. London:
Vugt, M., Roberts, G., & Hardy, C. (2007).
altruism: Development of reputation-based cooperation
in groups. In R. Dunbar & L. Barrett,
Handbook of Evolutionary Psychology.
Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Vugt, M., & Van
Lange, P. (2006). Psychological
adaptations for prosocial behaviour: The altruism
puzzle. In M. Schaller, D. Kenrick, &
J. Simpson, Evolution and Social Psychology
(pp. 237-261). Psychology Press.
M. (2006). Why
terrorism does not work. International
Security, 31, 42-78.
J. (1997). Political
action vs. voluntarism in social dilemmas and
aid for the needy. Rationality and Society,
J. (2001). Confusion
of group-interest and self-interest in parochial
cooperation on behalf of a group. Journal
of Conflict Resolution, 45, 283-296.
Boyd, R., Gintis, H., & Bowles, S. (2010).
punishment of defectors sustains cooperation and
can proliferate when rare. Science, 328,
B. (1996). Evolution
and the prisoner's dilemma. Addressed in Chaos
cheating and cooperation: potential solutions
to the Prisoner's Dilemma. OIKOS, 76, 14-24.
D.M., & Duntley, J.D. (2008). Adaptations
for exploitation. Group Dynamics: Theory,
Research, and Practice, 12, 53-62.
De Cremer, D., & Van Vugt, M. (1999). Social
identification effects in social dilemmas: A transformation
of motives. European Journal of Social
Psychology, 29, 871-893.
De Cremer, D., & Van Vugt, M. (2002). Intergroup
and intragroup aspects of leadership in social
dilemmas: A relational model of cooperation.
Journal of Experimental Social Psychology,
J. H., & Christakis, N. A. (2010). Cooperative
behavior cascades in human social networks.
PNAS, 107, 5334-5338.
R. & Van Boven, L. (2001). Contingent
social utility in the Prisoners Dilemma. Journal
of Economic Behavior and Organization, 45,
M., & Denzler, M. (2009). What
makes revenge sweet: Seeing the offender suffer
or delivering a message? Journal of Experimental
Social Psychology, 45, 840–844.
C., & Van Vugt, M. (2006). Nice
guys finish first: The competitive altruism hypothesis.
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin,
C. M., & Van Vugt, M (2006). From
fault line to group fission: Understanding transformations
in small groups. Personality and Social
Psychology Bulletin, 32, 392-404.
F. (1992). Sociobiology
and the prisoner's dilemma. Addressed in Evolution,
Selfishness and Cooperation, Journal of Ideas,
Vol 2, 4, pp 70-76.
Iredale, W., Van Vugt., M., & Dunbar, R. (2008).
off in humans: Male generosity as mate signal.
Evolutionary Psychology, 6, 386-392.
J. A., van Lange, P. A. M., & van Vugt, M.
cares about the environmental impact of cars?
Those with an eye toward the future. Environment
& Behavior, 35, 1-20.
J.T., & Burgess, D. (2000). Attitudinal
ambivalence and the conflict between group and
system justification motives in low status groups.
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin,
A. & Fantino, E. (2007). The
sharing game: Fairness in resource allocation
as a function of incentive, gender, and recipient
types. Judgment and Decision Making, 2,
M., Heinrichs, M., Zak, P., Fischbacher, U., &
Fehr, E. (2005). Oxytocin
increases trust in humans. Nature, 435,
G., & Babcock, L. (1997). Explaining
bargaining impasse: the role of self-serving biases.
Journal of Economic Perspectives. 11,
O.C.H., Tamnes, C.K., Mouestue, C., Buss, D.M.,
& Vollrath, M. (2007). Tactics
of hierarchy negotiation. Journal of Research
in Personality, 42, 25-44.
J., Thomspon, L., & Van Boven, L. (2003).
negotiation skills: Four models of knowledge creation
and transfer. Management Science, 49,
O'Gorman, R. O., Henrich, J., & Van Vugt,
free-riding in public goods games: Designated
solitary punishers can sustain human cooperation.
Proceedings of Royal Society-B, 276,
Park, J., Schaller, M., & Van Vugt, M. (2008).
psychology of human kin recognition: Heuristic
cues, erroneous inferences, and their implications.
Review of General Psychology, 12, 215-235.
Powell, C., & Van Vugt, M. (2003). Genuine
giving or selfish sacrifice? The role of commitment
and cost level upon willingness to sacrifice.
European Journal of Social Psychology, 33, 403-412.
Boven, L., Gilovich, T., & Medvec, V. (2003).
illusion of transparency in negotiations.
Negotiation Journal, 19, 117-131.
Boven, L., & Thompson, L. (2003). A
look into the mind of the negotiator: Mental models
in negotiation. Group Processes and Interpersonal
Relations, 6, 387-404.
Lange, P., Bekkers, R., Schuyt, T., & Van
Vugt, M. (2007). From
games to giving: Social value orientation predicts
donations to noble causes. Basic and Applied
Social Psychology, 29, 375-384.
Vugt, M. (1997). Why
the privatisation of public goods might fail:
A social dilemma approach. Social Psychology
Quarterly, 63, 355-366.
Vugt, M. (1998). The
conflicts of modern society. The Psychologist,
Vugt, M. (2001). Community
identification moderating the impact of financial
incentives in a natural social dilemma: A water
shortage. Personality and Social Psychology
Bulletin, 27, 1440-1449.
Vugt, M. (2002). Central,
individual or collective control? Social dilemma
strategies for natural resource management.
American Behavioral Scientist, 45, 783-800.
Vugt, M. (2004). Follow
the leader... but at what cost? The Psychologist,
Vugt, M. (2006). The
evolutionary origins of leadership and followership.
Personality and Social Psychology Review,
Vugt, M. (2008). Follow
me: The origins of leadership. New Scientist,
14 June, 2660.
Van Vugt, M. (2009). Averting
the tragedy of the commons: Using social psychological
science to protect the environment. Current
Directions in Psychological Science, 18,
Vugt, M., De Cremer, D., & Janssen, D. (2007).
differences in cooperation and competition: The
male warrior hypothesis. Psychological
Science, 18, 19-23.
Vugt, M., Dowding, K., John, P., & Van Dijk,
E. (2002). Exit
or voice? Strategies for problem-solving in residential
communities. Journal of Applied Social
Psychology, 32, 1-20.
Van Vugt, M., & Hardy, C. (2010). Cooperation
for reputation: Wasteful contributions as costly
signals in public goods. Group Processes
and Intergroup Relations, 13, 101-111.
Vugt, M., & Hart, C. M. (2004). Social
identity as social glue: The origins of group
loyalty. Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, 86, 583-598.
Vugt, M., Hogan, R., & Kaiser, R. (2008).
followership, and evolution: Some lessons from
the past. American Psychologist, 63,
Vugt, M., Jepson, S., Hart, C., & De Cremer,
D. (2004) Autocratic
leadership in social dilemmas: A threat to group
stability. Journal of Experimental Social
Psychology, 40, 1-13.
Vugt, M., Meertens, R., & Van Lange, P. (1995).
versus public transportation? The role of social
value orientations in a real-life social dilemma.
Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 25,
Vugt, M. and Samuelson, C. D. (1999). The
impact of metering in a natural resource crisis:
A social dilemma analysis. Personality
and Social Psychology Bulletin, 25, 731-745.
Vugt, M., & Schaller, M. (2008). Evolutionary
perspectives on group dynamics: An introduction.
Group Dynamics, 12, 1-6.
Vugt, M. & Snyder, M. (2002). Cooperation
in the 21st Century: Fostering community action
and civic participation. American Behavioral
Scientist, 45, 761-918 (Special issue).
Vugt, M., & Spisak, B. R. (2008). Sex
differences in leadership emergence during competitions
within and between groups. Psychological
Science, 19, 854-858.
Van Vugt, M., Van Lange, P., & Meertens, R.
by car or public transportation? A social dilemma
analysis of travel mode judgments. European
Journal of Social Psychology, 26, 373-395.
Vugt, M., Van Lange, P. A. M., Meertens, R. M.
and Joireman, J. A. (1996). Why
structural solutions to social dilemmas might
fail: A field experiment on the first carpool
priority lane in Europe. Social Psychology
Quarterly, 59, 364-374.
D. M., & Crano, W. D. (1975). Racial
factors in helping behavior: An unobtrusive field
experiment. Journal of Personality and
Social Psychology, 32, 901-905.
D. S., Van Vugt, M., & O'Gorman, R. (2008).
selection theory and major evolutionary transitions:
Implications for Psychological Science. Current
Directions in Psychological Science, 17,
2000-2019. This site was created and is maintained by Jon
Mueller, Professor of Psychology at North
Central College, Naperville, IL. Send comments to Jon.