Northwestern University

Fri 11:00 AM

Social Psych Brownbag: Dr. Ana Guinote on power and social cognition

When: Friday, February 1, 2013
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM  

Where: Swift Hall, Room 414, 2029 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student

Contact: Dorainne Levy   847.467.4355

Group: Social Psychology Program

Category: Academic


This week's speaker is Ana Guinote, a Senior Lecturer at University College London (UK). 

Power, Cognition and Situated Behavior: The Case of Dispositions

In the present talk I will discuss effects of power on motivation and cognitive processes, and how these effects impact behavior. I will argue that the information processing strategies of powerholders lead to situated judgment and behavior, and therefore increased variability across different contexts.  This claim will be demonstrated in the context of dispositional behavior.  In a series of studies chronic dispositions of the person were first assessed. Power was then manipulated and participants were exposed to a neutral prime (favoring the application of chronically accessible knowledge) or to a prime that activated alternative constructs. Powerholders responded more in line with dispositions but only under the neutral prime. When alternative constructs had been activated powerholders responded less in line with their dispositions. These studies support a single mechanism for the effects of power. Power seems to increase judgments and behavior in line with accessible constructs regardless of whether these constructs are chronically or temporarily accessible. 

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