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  • 1.
    Cownden, Daniel
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. University of Glasgow, United Kingdom.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Institute for Futures Studies, Sweden.
    A popular misapplication of evolutionary modeling to the study of human cooperation2017In: Evolution and human behavior, ISSN 1090-5138, E-ISSN 1879-0607, Vol. 38, no 3, p. 421-427Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    To examine the evolutionary basis of a behavior, an established approach (known as the phenotypic gambit) is to assume that the behavior is controlled by a single allele, the fitness effects of which are derived from a consideration of how the behavior interacts, via life-history, with other ecological factors. Here we contrast successful applications of this approach with several examples of an influential and superficially similar line of research on the evolutionary basis of human cooperation. A key difference is identified: in the latter line of research the focal behavior, cooperation, is abstractly defined in terms of immediate fitness costs and benefits. Selection is then assumed to act on strategies in an iterated social context for which fitness effects can be derived by aggregation of the abstractly defined immediate fitness effects over a lifetime. This approach creates a closed theoretical loop, rendering models incapable of making predictions or providing insight into the origin of human cooperation. We conclude with a discussion of how evolutionary approaches might be appropriately used in the study of human social behavior.

  • 2. Cownden, Daniel
    et al.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Stockholm Institute for Future Studies, Sweden.
    The implications of learning across perceptually and strategically distinct situations2018In: Synthese, ISSN 0039-7857, E-ISSN 1573-0964, Vol. 195, no 2, p. 511-528Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Game theory is a formal approach to behavior that focuses on the strategic aspect of situations. The game theoretic approach originates in economics but has been embraced by scholars across disciplines, including many philosophers and biologists. This approach has an important weakness: the strategic aspect of a situation, which is its defining quality in game theory, is often not its most salient quality in human (or animal) cognition. Evidence from a wide range of experiments highlights this shortcoming. Previous theoretical and empirical work has sought to address this weakness by considering learning across an ensemble of multiple games simultaneously. Here we extend this framework, incorporating artificial neural networks, to allow for an investigation of the interaction between the perceptual and functional similarity of the games composing the larger ensemble. Using this framework, we conduct a theoretical investigation of a population that encounters both stag hunts and prisoner’s dilemmas, two situations that are strategically different but which may or may not be perceptually similar.

  • 3.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Autism-spectrum traits predict humor styles in the general population2013In: Humor: An International Journal of Humor Research, ISSN 0933-1719, E-ISSN 1613-3722, Vol. 26, no 3, p. 461-475Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Previous research shows that individuals with Asperger syndrome or high-functioning autism tend to have impaired processing of humor and laugh at things that are not commonly found funny. Here the relationship between humor styles and the broader autism phenotype was investigated in a sample of the general population. The autism-spectrum quotient (AQ) and the humor styles questionnaire (HSQ) were administered to six hundred US participants recruited through an Internet-based service. On the whole, high scores on AQ were negatively related to positive humor styles and unrelated to negative humor styles. However, AQ subscales representing different autism-spectrum traits exhibited different patterns. In particular, the factor poor mind-reading was associated with higher scores on negative humor styles and the factor attention to detail was associated with higher scores on all humor styles, suggesting a more nuanced picture of the relationship between autism-spectrum traits and humor.

  • 4.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Repeated learning and cultural evolution2012In: Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning / [ed] Norbert M. Seel, Dordrecht: Springer Science+Business Media B.V., 2012, no 20, p. 2824-2825Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Andersson, Per A.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Moderators of the disapproval of peer punishment2016In: Group Processes & Intergroup Relations, ISSN 1368-4302, E-ISSN 1461-7188, Vol. 19, no 2, p. 152-168Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent studies have found disapproval of peer punishment of norm violations. This seems puzzling, given the potential benefits peer punishers contribute to the group. We suggest part of the answer is that peer punishers tend to come across as aggressive and as such may be viewed as more problematic than beneficial to have around. We used simple computer animations of geometric shapes to enact 15 precise variations of social sanctions against a norm violator. More than 1,800 subjects were recruited to watch an animation and judge the behavior and character of the animated agents. They also completed a trait aggression measure. Across the variations peer punishment was typically disapproved of, especially when severe or openly aggressive, and especially by subjects low on trait aggression. We conclude that there seems to be a social norm against peer punishment and that dislike of aggressiveness seems to be part of the reason why.

  • 6.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Andersson, Per A.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Institute for Futures Studies, Sweden.
    When is it appropriate to reprimand a norm violation? The roles of anger, behavioral consequences, violation severity, and social distance2017In: Judgment and decision making, ISSN 1930-2975, E-ISSN 1930-2975, Vol. 12, no 4, p. 396-407Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Experiments on economic games typically fail to find positive reputational effects of using peer punishment of selfish behavior in social dilemmas. Theorists had expected positive reputational effects because of the potentially beneficial consequences that punishment may have on norm violators' behavior. Going beyond the game-theoretic paradigm, we used vignettes to study how various social factors influence approval ratings of a peer who reprimands a violator of a group-beneficial norm. We found that ratings declined when punishers showed anger, and this effect was mediated by perceived aggressiveness. Thus the same emotions that motivate peer punishers may make them come across as aggressive, to the detriment of their reputation. However, the negative effect of showing anger disappeared when the norm violation was sufficiently severe. Ratings of punishers were also influenced by social distance, such that it is less appropriate for a stranger than a friend to reprimand a violator. In sum, peer punisher ratings were very high for a friend reprimanding a severe norm violation, but particularly poor for a stranger showing anger at a mild norm violation. We found no effect on ratings of whether the reprimand had the beneficial consequence of changing the violator's behavior. Our findings provide insight into how peer punishers can avoid negative reputational effects. They also point to the importance of going beyond economic games when studying peer punishment.

  • 7.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Coultas, Julie C.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. University of Sussex, UK .
    Corpses, maggots, poodles and rats: A content bias for disgust in three phases of cultural transmission2014In: Journal of Cognition and Culture, ISSN 1567-7095, E-ISSN 1568-5373, Vol. 14, no 1-2, p. 1-26Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    AbstractIn one conception of cultural evolution, the evolutionary success of cultural units that are transmitted from individual to individual is determined by forces of cultural selection. Here we argue that it is helpful to distinguish between several distinct phases of the transmission process in which cultural selection can operate, such as a choose-to-receive phase, an encode-and-retrieve phase, and a choose-to-transmit phase. Here we focus on emotional selection in cultural transmission of urban legends, which has previously been shown to operate in the choose-to-transmit phase. In a series of experiments we studied serial transmission of stories based on urban legends manipulated to be either high or low on disgusting content. Results supported emotional selection operating in all three phases of cultural transmission. Thus, the prevalence of disgusting urban legends in North America may be explained by emotional selection through a multitude of pathways.

  • 8.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Coultas, Julie C.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution.
    de Barra, Mícheál
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution.
    Cross-Cultural Differences in Emotional Selection on Transmission of Information2016In: Journal of Cognition and Culture, ISSN 1567-7095, E-ISSN 1568-5373, Vol. 16, no 1-2, p. 122-143Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Research on cultural transmission among Americans has established a bias for transmitting stories that have disgusting elements (such as exposure to rats and maggots). Conceived of as a cultural evolutionary force, this phenomenon is one type of emotional selection. In a series of online studies with Americans and Indians we investigate whether there are cultural differences in emotional selection, such that the transmission process favours different kinds of content in different countries. The first study found a bias for disgusting content (rats and maggots) among Americans but not among Indians. Four subsequent studies focused on how country interacts with kind of emotional content (disgusting vs. happy surprises and good news) in reactions to transmission of stories or information. Whereas Indian participants, compared to Americans, tended to be less interested in, and excited by, transmission of stories and news involving common disgust-elicitors (like rats), the opposite pattern held for transmission of happy surprises and good news (e.g., the opening of a new public facility). We discuss various possible explanations and implications.

  • 9.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Cownden, Daniel
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. INgrooves, Canada.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Institute for Futures Studies, Sweden.
    Social learning may lead to population level conformity without individual level frequency bias2017In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 7, article id 17341Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A requirement of culture, whether animal or human, is some degree of conformity of behavior within populations. Researchers of gene-culture coevolution have suggested that population level conformity may result from frequency-biased social learning: individuals sampling multiple role models and preferentially adopting the majority behavior in the sample. When learning from a single role model, frequency-bias is not possible. We show why a population-level trend, either conformist or anticonformist, may nonetheless be almost inevitable in a population of individuals that learn through social enhancement, that is, using observations of others' behavior to update their own probability of using a behavior in the future. The exact specification of individuals' updating rule determines the direction of the trend. These results offer a new interpretation of previous findings from simulations of social enhancement in combination with reinforcement learning, and demonstrate how results of dynamical models may strongly depend on seemingly innocuous choices of model specifications, and how important it is to obtain empirical data on which to base such choices.

  • 10.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Funcke, Alexander
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden; Harvard University, USA.
    A below-average effect with respect to American political stereotypes on warmth and competence2015In: Political Psychology, ISSN 0162-895X, E-ISSN 1467-9221, Vol. 36, no 3, p. 341-350Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The above-average effect is the phenomenon that people tend to judge themselves above average on desirable traits. Based on social identity theory, we propose that a below-average effect may arise when individuals rate themselves and the average ingroup member on traits stereotypically associated with the ingroup. In two studies, Republican and Democrat participants rated themselves and the average political ingroup member on possession of desirable traits related to warmth and competence. Current political stereotypes in America associate the former dimension with Democrats and the latter with Republicans. Consistent with our hypothesis, the above-average effect was moderated by political group and dimension in interaction. In particular, Democrats rated themselves below the average Democrat on warmth and Republicans rated themselves below the average Republican on competence.

  • 11.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Malardalen University, Sweden.
    Funcke, Alexander
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Malardalen University, Sweden.
    Humble Self-Enhancement: Religiosity and the Better-Than-Average Effect2014In: Social Psychology and Personality Science, ISSN 1948-5506, E-ISSN 1948-5514, Vol. 5, no 1, p. 76-83Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Prior research has linked religiosity to certain forms of self-enhancement. We extend this literature by three studies linking religiosity to the well-established better-than-average effect (BAE). First, a reanalysis of self-judgments of desirable characteristics in 15 nations showed that the BAE was stronger in more religious countries, even taking into account gross domestic product, interdependence, and economic inequality. Second, in two online surveys totaling 1,000 Americans, the BAE was stronger among more religious individuals. Several observations indicated that this relation was due to individuals self-stereotyping with respect to their religious in-groups. In particular, the relation was restricted to characteristics on the warmth dimension, consistent with the religious stereotype, and the average religious in-group member tended to be judged even more favorably than self. The latter phenomenon, which we term humble self-enhancement, is consistent with other studies linking stronger religiosity to greater favoritism of the religious in-group and greater derogation of religious out-groups.

  • 12.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Häggström, Olle
    Lord's Paradox in a Continuous Setting and a Regression Artifact in Numerical Cognition Research2014In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 9, no 4, p. e95949-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper we review, and elaborate on, the literature on a regression artifact related to Lord's paradox in a continuous setting. Specifically, the question is whether a continuous property of individuals predicts improvement from training between a pretest and a posttest. If the pretest score is included as a covariate, regression to the mean will lead to biased results if two critical conditions are satisfied: (1) the property is correlated with pretest scores and (2) pretest scores include random errors. We discuss how these conditions apply to the analysis in a published experimental study, the authors of which concluded that linearity of children's estimations of numerical magnitudes predicts arithmetic learning from a training program. However, the two critical conditions were clearly met in that study. In a reanalysis we find that the bias in the method can fully account for the effect found in the original study. In other words, data are consistent with the null hypothesis that numerical magnitude estimations are unrelated to arithmetic learning.

  • 13.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Jansson, Fredrik
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Procedural priming of a numerical cognitive illusion2016In: Judgment and decision making, ISSN 1930-2975, E-ISSN 1930-2975, Vol. 11, no 3, p. 205-212Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A strategy activated in one task may be transferred to subsequent tasks and prevent activation of other strategies that would otherwise come to mind, a mechanism referred to as procedural priming. In a novel application of procedural priming we show that it can make or break cognitive illusions. Our test case is the 1/k illusion, which is based on the same unwarranted mathematical shortcut as the MPG illusion and the time-saving bias. The task is to estimate distances between values of fractions on the form 1/k. Most people given this task intuitively base their estimates on the distances between the denominators (i.e., the reciprocals of the fractions), which may yield very poor estimations of the true distances between the fractions. As expected, the tendency to fall for this illusion is related to cognitive style (Study 1). In order to apply procedural priming we constructed versions of the task in which the illusion is weak, in the sense that most people do not fall for it anymore. We then gave participants both strong illusion and weak illusion versions of the task (Studies 2 and 3). Participants who first did the task in the weak illusion version would often persist with the correct strategy even in the strong illusion version, thus breaking the otherwise strong illusion in the latter task. Conversely, participants who took the strong illusion version first would then often fall for the illusion even in the weak illusion version, thus strengthening the otherwise weak illusion in the latter task.

  • 14.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Kazemi, Ali
    Törnblom, Kjell
    A New Look at Individual Differences in Perceptions of Unfairness: The Theory of Maximally Unfair Allocations in Multiparty Situations2015In: Social Justice Research, ISSN 0885-7466, E-ISSN 1573-6725, Vol. 28, no 4, p. 401-414Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Previous research has demonstrated that unfairness judgments of resource allocations become more complex when there are more than two recipients. In order to explain some of this complexity, we propose a set of psychological mechanisms that may underlie four different choices of maximally unfair resource allocations (MUA): Self-Single-Loser, Self-One-Loser-of-Many, Self-Single-Winner, and Self-One-Winner-of-Many. From this psychological theory, several predictions are derived and tested in vignette studies involving a total of 708 participants recruited online using MTurk. As predicted by our theory, (1) choices of MUA where there is a single loser were much more common when the allocated resource was of negative rather than positive valence, and (2) the amount of egoistic bias individuals exhibited when judging the unfairness in receiving a small rather than a large share in a non-extreme multi-party allocation was predicted by their choices of MUA. These findings suggest that an individual's choice of MUA reveals some generally relevant principles of how unfairness is perceived in multi-party allocations. This opens up new lines of inquiry, especially regarding research on social dilemmas and social value orientation.

  • 15.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University .
    Martin, Chris C.
    Emory University.
    Who Accurately Predicted the End of the Government Shutdown?2015In: Social Science Research Network, ISSN 1556-5068Article in journal (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    In October 2013, the US government was shut down because of a stalled budget bill, and uncertainty prevailed regarding the end of the shutdown. Four days before the shutdown ended, we conducted a study on Mechanical Turk (N = 225) to investigate which individual differences were associated with accurate predictions of the shutdown’s end. The most accurate forecasts were made by people who were politically knowledgeable and politically engaged. Selfconfidence (in one’s forecast) and generalized trust were also positively associated with accuracy, but optimism was not. Conservatives were expected to predict later end dates, yet conservatism neither predicted inaccuracy nor moderated the other effects. These findings suggest that in at least some political forecasts, ideology may play a trivial role.

  • 16.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Simpson, Brent
    Editorial Decisions May Perpetuate Belief in Invalid Research Findings2013In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 8, no 9, article id e73364Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Social psychology and related disciplines are seeing a resurgence of interest in replication, as well as actual replication efforts. But prior work suggests that even a clear demonstration that a finding is invalid often fails to shake acceptance of the finding. This threatens the full impact of these replication efforts. Here we show that the actions of two key players journal editors and the authors of original (invalidated) research findings - are critical to the broader public's continued belief in an invalidated research conclusion. Across three experiments, we show that belief in an invalidated finding falls sharply when a critical failed replication is published in the same - versus different - journal as the original finding, and when the authors of the original finding acknowledge that the new findings invalidate their conclusions. We conclude by discussing policy implications of our key findings.

  • 17.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Malardalen University, Sweden.
    Simpson, Brent
    Poverty Prefers Company2014In: Social Psychology and Personality Science, ISSN 1948-5506, E-ISSN 1948-5514, Vol. 5, no 3, p. 319-325Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In three web-based experiments, we show that both actual poverty and experimentally induced (imagined) poverty create a preference for greater inequality. Study 1, a cross-national comparison between Americans and Swedes, showed that respondents who were actually poor and those who were experimentally induced to imagine that they were poor tended to express a heightened preference for greater inequality, and for a higher proportion of poor citizens. Study 2 replicated the effects using different procedures. Study 3 showed that imagining oneself being poor increases preferences for a greater proportion of poor people, but imagining oneself being rich does not increase preferences for a greater proportion of rich people. This poverty prefers company effect might affect support for policies aiming at reducing the number of poor people.

  • 18.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Group differences in broadness of values may drive dynamics of public opinion on moral issues2015In: Mathematical Social Sciences, ISSN 0165-4896, E-ISSN 1879-3118, Vol. 77, p. 1-8Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Here we propose the idea that the success of an argument in favor of an issue position should depend on whether the argument resonates with the audience's values. Now consider two groups, one of which has a broader set of values than the other. We develop a mathematical model to investigate how this difference in broadness of values may drive a change on the population level towards positions in line with the more narrow set of values. The model is motivated by the empirical finding that conservative morality rests equally on moral foundations that are individualizing (harm and fairness) and binding (purity, authority, and ingroup), whereas liberal morality relies mainly on the individualizing moral foundations. The model then predicts that, under certain conditions, the whole population will tend to move towards positions on moral issues (e.g., same-sex marriage) that are supported by individualizing moral foundations.

  • 19.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Injunctive Versus Functional Inferences From Descriptive Norms: Comment on Gelfand and Harrington2015In: Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, ISSN 0022-0221, E-ISSN 1552-5422, Vol. 46, no 10, p. 1330-1332Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 20.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Spontaneous associations and label framing have similar effects in the public goods game2014In: Judgment and decision making, ISSN 1930-2975, E-ISSN 1930-2975, Vol. 9, no 5, p. 360-372Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    It is known that presentation of a meaningful label (e. g., The Teamwork Game) can influence decisions in economic games. A common view is that such labels cue associations to preexisting mental models of situations, a process here called frame selection. In the absence of such cues, participants may still spontaneously associate a game with a preexisting frame. We used the public goods game to compare the effect of such spontaneous frame selection with the effect of label framing. Participants in a condition where the public goods game was labeled The Teamwork Game tended to contribute at the same level as participants who spontaneously associated the unlabeled game with teamwork, whereas those who did not associate the the unlabeled game with teamwork tended to make lower contributions. We conclude that neutrally described games may be subject to spontaneous frame selection effects comparable in size to the effects of label framing.

  • 21.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Institute for Futures Studies, Sweden.
    Andersson, Per A.
    Aveyard, Mark
    Brauer, Markus
    Gritskov, Vladimir
    Kiyonari, Toko
    Kuhlman, David M.
    Maitner, Angela T.
    Manesi, Zoi
    Molho, Catherine
    Peperkoorn, Leonard S.
    Rizwan, Muhammad
    Stivers, Adam W.
    Tian, Qirui
    Van Lange, Paul A. M.
    Vartanova, Irina
    Wu, Junhui
    Yamagishi, Toshio
    Cultural Universals and Cultural Differences in Meta-Norms about Peer Punishment2017In: Management and Organization Review, ISSN 1740-8776, E-ISSN 1740-8784, Vol. 13, no 4, p. 851-870Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Violators of cooperation norms may be informally punished by their peers. How such norm enforcement is judged by others can be regarded as a meta-norm (i.e., a second-order norm). We examined whether meta-norms about peer punishment vary across cultures by having students in eight countries judge animations in which an agent who over-harvested a common resource was punished either by a single peer or by the entire peer group. Whether the punishment was retributive or restorative varied between two studies, and findings were largely consistent across these two types of punishment. Across all countries, punishment was judged as more appropriate when implemented by the entire peer group than by an individual. Differences between countries were revealed in judgments of punishers vs. non-punishers. Specifically, appraisals of punishers were relatively negative in three Western countries and Japan, and more neutral in Pakistan, UAE, Russia, and China, consistent with the influence of individualism, power distance, and/or indulgence. Our studies constitute a first step in mapping how meta-norms vary around the globe, demonstrating both cultural universals and cultural differences.

  • 22.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden; Institute for Futures Studies, Sweden.
    Andersson, Per A.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Lindholm, Torun
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Personality, Social and Developmental Psychology.
    Costly punishment in the ultimatum game evokes moral concern, in particular when framed as payoff reduction2017In: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, ISSN 0022-1031, E-ISSN 1096-0465, Vol. 69, p. 59-64Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The ultimatum game is a common economic experiment in which some participants reject another's unfair offer of how to split some money, even though it leaves them both worse off. This costly behavior can be seen as enforcement of a fairness norm and has been labeled “altruistic punishment”, suggesting that it is a moral thing to do. But is this behavior viewed as moral by participants? Is it viewed as punishment? And are the payoff consequences of the behavior sufficient to determine the answers to these questions? To investigate this we framed costly punishment in two different ways: either as rejection of an offer (the standard ultimatum game framing) or as reduction of payoff. In a series of paid and hypothetical experiments we found that moral concerns about costly punishment depended on the framing. Specifically, the reduction frame elicited more moral concern about, and less use of, costly punishment than did the rejection frame. Several implications are discussed.

  • 23.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Strimling, Pontus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Linköping University, Sweden.
    Coultas, Julie C.
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. University of Sussex, England.
    Bidirectional associations between descriptive and injunctive norms2015In: Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, ISSN 0749-5978, E-ISSN 1095-9920, Vol. 129, p. 59-69Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Modern research on social norms makes an important distinction between descriptive norms (how people commonly behave) and injunctive norms (what one is morally obligated to do). Here we propose that this distinction is far from clear in the cognition of social norms. In a first study, using the implicit association test, the concepts of common and moral were found to be strongly associated. Some implications of this automatic common-moral association were investigated in a subsequent series of experiments: Our participants tended to make explicit inferences from descriptive norms to injunctive norms and vice versa; they tended to mix up descriptive and injunctive concepts in recall tasks; and frequency information influenced participants' own moral judgments. We conclude by discussing how the common-moral association could play a role in the dynamics of social norms.

  • 24. Jansson, Fredrik
    et al.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. School of Education, Culture and Communication, Mälardalen University.
    Cooperation and shared beliefs about trust in the assurance game2015In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 10, no 12, article id e0144191Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Determinants of cooperation include ingroup vs. outgroup membership, and individual traits, such as prosociality and trust. We investigated whether these factors can be overridden by beliefs about people’s trust. We manipulated the information players received about each other’s level of general trust, “high” or “low”. These levels were either measured (Experiment 1) or just arbitrarily assigned labels (Experiment 2). Players’ choices whether to cooperate or defect in a stag hunt (or an assurance game)—where it is mutually beneficial to cooperate, but costly if the partner should fail to do so—were strongly predicted by what they were told about the other player’s trust label, as well as by what they were told that the other player was told about their own label. Our findings demonstrate the importance for cooperation in a risky coordination game of both first- and second-order beliefs about how much people trust each other. This supports the idea that institutions can influence cooperation simply by influencing beliefs.

  • 25. Markovsky, Barry
    et al.
    Eriksson, Kimmo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. Mälardalen University, Sweden.
    Comparing direct and indirect measures of just rewards: what have we learned?2012In: Sociological Methods & Research, ISSN 0049-1241, E-ISSN 1552-8294, Vol. 41, no 1, p. 240-245Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    1. Jasso argued that her indirect method for inferring just rewards ispreferable to direct methods because the former is less susceptibleto biases. We pointed out that this claim was merely speculative andthat old and new evidence show both methods to be susceptible tosevere biases.

    2. Results from our research found that the two methods were uncorre-lated over the identical set of stimuli, and hence at least one of themethods must be very unreliable. Of the two methods, only the indi-rect method inferred just rewards that were implausibly extreme, astrong indication that it is the less reliable. This was evident inresults that Jasso reported in 2008 but did not address at that time.

    3. Direct and indirect methods both must assume that respondents havein mind just rewards for practically any set of contextual factors. This assumption is both unproven and implausible. The alternativeassumption is that respondents use contextual cues to help them ren-der fairness judgments but, as a consequence, their judgments arebiased by those cues.

    4. We noted that anchoring theory specifies conditions for the occur-rence of biases due to the presence of anchor information in thejudgment context. These conditions are satisfied in Jasso’s vignettemethod. Predictably, results both from prior research and from ournew research indicated strong anchoring biases for both direct andindirect justice vignette measures.

    5. The indirect method uses a statistical model whose specification dif-fers from the theoretical model that it ostensibly implements. Thisspecification error introduces biases of its own

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