Social attitude is the approach of a person displayed towards other individuals or groups. Social attitude comprehensively affects the way we perceive, behave in, and interact with, the surrounding world; it is simply not possible to understand complex social behaviour such as strategic thinking without first knowing the attitude of the parties involved. Several disciplines contribute to the complex study of social attitude (social preferences in economics, social value orientation in psychology), but only recently have these disciplines started to communicate and develop comprehensive definitions and models. In particular, the current research debate focuses on pinpointing the nature of social attitude (e.g., what its defining components are), the factors that influence it (e.g. context, other individuals), as well as its consequences (e.g., its relevance for self-image representation). This thesis aims to answer to some of the open questions in the literature by testing and comparing the proposed competing explanations. The studies presented are based on a series of behavioural experiments coupled with established but also newly developed measurement tools concerning social norms and personal preferences. In addition, we try to uncover the mental processes underlying decisions with the help of computational models. The thesis is structured as follows. In Chapter 1, We outline a brief summary of the theories on social attitude from the economic and psychological literature, and describe the main tasks and models employed in the thesis. Chapter 2 explores how social attitude is influenced by others’ behaviour. We conduct a systematic comparison of the possible mechanisms driving attitude conformity using various experimental conditions, computational models, and control tasks (e.g., norm elicitation). We find that participants conform due to both peer influence (by learning from others about how salient a norm is) and compliance to authority (i.e. experimenter demand effects). Chapter 3 studies the effect of context in a task eliciting social attitude. We specifically test the effect of unavailable choices, that we call ”meta-context”, on participant’s decisions. We find that participants’ concerns about social norms, as well as their choices, depend on the currently available options, but also on meta-context. In Chapter 4, we study whether individuals tend to selectively forget about their morally questionable choices, and information related to it, such as the context in which the choice was made. We find that participants recollect less correctly selfish or anti-social choices compared to pro-social ones, but we find no memory bias concerning the context of the choice. Moreover, we uncover some potential evidence of a second memory bias related to choice frequency: people are generally more pro-social than antisocial, which means antisocial choices are more rare and thus more difficult to remember correctly. Finally, in chapter 5 We summarise the main findings of the thesis and present some conclusions. We try to integrate the various results to propose an empirically-informed model of social attitude to be applied in future research on the topic.
Conformity, Context, Self-Image: A Multifaceted Study of Social Attitudes in Decision Making / Panizza, Folco. - (2020 Jul 13), pp. 1-162.
|Titolo:||Conformity, Context, Self-Image: A Multifaceted Study of Social Attitudes in Decision Making|
|Anno di pubblicazione:||2020-07-13|
|Struttura:||Dipartimento di Psicologia e Scienze Cognitive|
|Corso di dottorato:||Cognitive and Brain Sciences|
|Supervisori e coordinatori:||Vostroknutov, Alexander|
|Tesi in cotutela:||no|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore M-PSI/01 - Psicologia Generale|
Settore M-PSI/05 - Psicologia Sociale
Settore SECS-P/01 - Economia Politica
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.15168/11572_269411|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||08.1 Tesi di dottorato (Doctoral Thesis)|