Modern Psychological Studies
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Place of Publication
To test the notion of urban "stimulus overload" (Milgram, 1970), this study replicates a 1977 "lost child" experiment, with a child (age 9 or 10) asking 146 New Yorkers for help. As expected: (a) The rate of New Yorkers who helped a lost child rose significantly, from 46% in 1977 to 61.6% in 2008. (b) When debriefed and told that the lost child was actually part of an experiment, only 11% of New Yorkers expressed a negative reaction, compared with 55% who reacted positively. In fact, the more helpful one's behavior, the more positive their later reaction to debriefing (r = +.67, p < .001). The implications of these findings are discussed, regarding the future methods and findings of urban psychology research.
BF1 .M63 v. 15 no. 1 2009
"Would New Yorkers help a lost child? 1976 v 2008?,"
Modern Psychological Studies: Vol. 15:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://scholar.utc.edu/mps/vol15/iss1/5