Are strangers just enemies you have not yet met? Group identities, not intergroup relations, shape ingroup bias in three natural groups

Gönül Doğan*, Luke Glowacki, Hannes Rusch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Humans often favour ingroup members over others, a bias that drives discrimination and intergroup conflicts. Hostile relations between groups and homogeneity within groups may affect such ingroup bias. In an experiment with members of three natural groups in Ethiopia, we vary intergroup relations (neutral versus enmity) and exploit the natural variation in the homogeneity of groups (homogeneous versus heterogeneous) to identify their effect on in- and outgroup concerns. We find that ingroup bias largely manifests as positive concern for ingroup members combined with no concern for outgroup members. Enmity has no effect on ingroup bias, whereas ingroup concern is amplified in homogeneous groups. Group homogeneity, thus, is the primary driver of concerns for others in our study’s context. Our results are relevant to understanding the consequences of exclusionary group identities.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20210419
Number of pages7
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B-biological Sciences
Volume377
Issue number1851
Early online date2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2022

Keywords

  • natural groups
  • ingroup bias
  • enmity
  • experiment
  • group homogeneity
  • SOCIAL IDENTITY
  • IN-GROUP
  • GROUP MEMBERSHIP
  • COOPERATION
  • CONFLICT
  • IMPACT
  • NORM
  • ALTRUISM
  • LOVE
  • IDENTIFICATION

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