Modern Psychological Studies
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Place of Publication
The experiment examined how salience of out-group membership affects an individual's tendency to financially exploit an out-group member in a prisoner's dilemma (PD) game and a monetary bonus allocation task. It also examined the role of depersonalization of self and others. Half of the research participants played a PD game to win money with an imaginary opponent, who had a foreign accent, and the other half did with an opponent, who spoke fluent English. A salient indication of out-group membership was present in the former (accent) condition, and it was absent in the latter (control). Participants were also asked to allocate bonus money between the opponent and themselves. It was expected that: 1) participants in the accent condition would be more likely to depersonalize self and others than participants in the control condition; and 2) that participants who showed a higher level of depersonalization would make more competitive responses in the PD game and allocate more money to themselves than those who showed a lower level of depersonalization. The results confirmed the first hypothesis, but only a part of the second hypothesis. The level of depersonalization of self and others predicted the nature of the PD game responses, but not bonus money allocation. Unexpectedly, when the effect of depersonalization was collapsed, the presence of the accent produced a higher level of cooperation in the PD game.
BF1 .M63 v. 12 no. 2 2007
"Out-group exploitation through depersonalization in a prisoner's dilemma game,"
Modern Psychological Studies: Vol. 12
, Article 2.
Available at: http://scholar.utc.edu/mps/vol12/iss2/2