Monday, July 02, 2018

Interesting new paper by Daniel Gilbert and others

but based on relatively small samples (20-100) of Harvard graduate students:
Prevalence-induced concept change in human judgement.
Why do some social problems seem so intractable? In a series of experiments, we show that people often respond to decreases in the prevalence of a stimulus by expanding their concept of it. When blue dots became rare, participants began to see purple dots as blue; when threatening faces became rare, participants began to see neutral faces as threatening; and when unethical requests became rare, participants began to see innocuous requests as unethical. This “prevalence-induced concept change” occurred even when participants were forewarned about it and even when they were instructed and paid to resist it. Social problems may seem intractable in part because reductions in their prevalence lead people to see more of them.
Discussion at Sciencedaily Problem with solving problems and Marginal Revolution Why Sexism and Racism Never Diminish–Even When Everyone Becomes Less Sexist and Racist

Daniel Gilbertis the author often best seller Stumbling on Happiness which has been mentioned before a few times in this blog. See also Overton window.

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