Primacy of warmth versus competence: A motivated bias?

Juliette Richetin, Federica Durante, Silvia Mari, Marco Perugini, Chiara Volpato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In line with previous results that challenge the traditional primacy of warmth over competence in outgroup perception, we propose to bridge elements from stereotype content model and social identity theory: Perceivers will use the competence and warmth dimensions differentially when interpreting higher or lower status outgroup members' behavior. We test the hypothesis that the dimension that is less favorable for the outgroup and more favorable for the ingroup will be used. In particular, we investigate whether the warmth dimension would better predict the interpretation of higher status outgroup members' behavior than the competence dimension, whereas the competence dimension would better predict the interpretation of lower status outgroup members' behavior than the warmth dimension. Two studies separately test these effects. Results suggest the existence of a motivated bias in interpreting outgroup members' behavior, especially when there is ingroup identification.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-435
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Social Psychology
Volume152
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2012

Keywords

  • competence
  • ingroup bias
  • intergroup perception
  • status
  • warmth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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