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Journal Articles Journal of Experimental Social Psychology Year : 2011

Increasing perceived variability reduces prejudice and discrimination


We examined whether increasing individuals' perceived variability of an out-group reduces prejudice and discrimination toward its members. In a series of 4 laboratory and field experiments, we attracted participants' attention to either the homogeneity or the heterogeneity of members of an out-group, and then measured their attitudes or behaviors. Perceived variability was manipulated by making subgroups salient, by portraying the out-group members as having diverse opinions, by making salient that out-group members have different characteristics, or by asking participants to think about differences among out-group members. Prejudice and discrimination were measured in terms of self-reported attitudes, distribution of rewards, helping an out-group confederate, and evaluation of an out-group candidate in a simulated hiring decision. In all experiments, perceived variability decreased prejudice and discrimination. This effect may be due to the fact that perceived variability decreases the role of group membership in the production of attitudes and behaviors toward other individuals.
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peer-00995261 , version 1 (23-05-2014)



Markus Brauer, Abdelatif Er-Rafiy. Increasing perceived variability reduces prejudice and discrimination. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 2011, ⟨10.1016/j.jesp.2011.03.003⟩. ⟨peer-00995261⟩


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