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Groups. Video Clip 2: Reginald Denny. Outline. Why we live in groups Social facilitation Social loafing Group decision making. Best reliable predictor of brain size in primates is social group size Human beings are adapted to live in social groups All primates except ourangutans.

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Groups

Groups

Video Clip 2: Reginald Denny


Outline

Outline

  • Why we live in groups

  • Social facilitation

  • Social loafing

  • Group decision making


Groups

  • Best reliable predictor of brain size in primates is social group size

  • Human beings are adapted to live in social groups

  • All primates except ourangutans


Benefits of group living

Benefits of group living

  • Protection from predation and from intergroup conflict

  • Collective hunting of big game & coordinated food gathering

  • Cultural learning


Social exclusion is painful eisenberger lieberman williams 2003

Social exclusion is painfulEisenberger, Lieberman, & Williams (2003)

  • Virtual ball-tossing game

  • Inclusion vs. exclusion rounds

  • fMRI scan

  • dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC)


Social exclusion is painful eisenberger lieberman williams 20031

Social exclusion is painfulEisenberger, Lieberman, & Williams (2003)

  • Greater activation of dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) when excluded

  • Excluded subjects who reported being more upset showed greater activation of dACC

  • Human sensitivity to social exclusion

  • Physical pain = social pain


The nature and purpose of group living

The Nature and Purpose of Group Living

Group - A collection of individuals that have relations to one another that make them interdependent to some significant degree

Groups vary in the degree of cohesion and interdependence


Social facilitation

Social Facilitation

The effect of the presence of others on performance

  • Does the presence of others increase or decrease performance?

  • Resolving the Contradiction: Zajonc’s theory


Social facilitation1

Social Facilitation

Facilitation: dominant response

  • Task is easy

  • Person is expert

    Inhibition: non-dominant response

  • Task is hard/complex

  • Person is novice


Social loafing

Social Loafing

  • Social loafing: decreased effort put forth by individuals when working in a group

  • Finding: burglars working in groups more likely to get caught!

  • Ingham (1974): blindfolded ppts pulled 18% harder when they thought were alone

  • Explanation: diffusion of responsibility


Social loafing1

Social Loafing

Less social loafing:

  • Task is challenging and involving

  • Individuals are identifiable

  • Members are friends

  • Groups are cohesive

  • In collectivistic cultures and among women


Group decision making

Group Decision Making

  • Important decisions are made in groups…

    • Governments

    • Juries

    • Committees

    • Company executive boards

  • How do groups affect decision making?


Group decision making1

Group Decision Making

  • Are many heads better than one?

  • Disastrous decisions by groups

  • Ex: Kennedy’s Bay of Pigs invasion

  • Modern example: Iraq invasion

  • Groupthink: social pressures to reach consensus in a highly cohesive group which leads to disastrous decisions


Group decision making2

Group Decision Making

  • Conditions that foster groupthink:

    • Stressful situation

    • Like minded members of group

    • Isolation from outside influences

    • Lack of procedures

    • Strong group leader


Group decision making3

Group Decision Making

  • Symptoms of groupthink

    • Illusion of invulnerability

    • Dissent is discouraged, esp. by “mindguards”

    • Self-sensorship, illusion of unanimity

    • One-sided debate (collective rationalization)

    • Unwillingness to consider alternatives


Group decision making4

Group Decision Making

  • Strategies to reduce groupthink

    • Encourage criticism

    • Input from outside sources

    • Generate different ideas, approaches before decisions is made

    • Watch out for illusion of invulnerability


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