Psychology Dictionary of Arguments

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Haslam I 165
Group behavior/conflicts/Tajfel: what are the minimal conditions for conflict to emerge between groups? (Taifel et al. 1971(1): 153-4):
1) No face-to-face interaction (within or between groups).
2) Complete anonymity.
3) No link between the criteria for categorization into groups and the nature of the responses requested from participants.
4) Respondents should not derive any (utilitarian) value from their responses (to rule out self-interest).
5) A strategy designed to differentiate between groups should be in competition with rational/utilitarian principles of obtaining the maximum benefit for all. In particular, benefit to the participant’s own group (the ingroup) should be contrasted with a strategy in which the ingroup gains more than the other group (the outgroup).
Responses should be made as important and real as possible (i.e., involve concrete rewards rather than some form of evaluation).


1. Tajfel, H., Flament, C., Billig, M.G. and Bundy, R.F. (1971) ‘Social categorization and intergroup behaviour’, European Journal of Social Psychology, 1: 149–77.


Russell Spears and Sabine Otten,“Discrimination. Revisiting Tajfel’s minimal group studies“, in: Joanne R. Smith and S. Alexander Haslam (eds.) 2017. Social Psychology. Revisiting the Classic studies. London: Sage Publications


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Tajfel, Henri
Haslam I
S. Alexander Haslam
Joanne R. Smith
Social Psychology. Revisiting the Classic Studies London 2017


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