The Effect of Intergroup Contact on Discrimination | Max-Planck-Institut für Sozialrecht und Sozialpolitik - MPISOC

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The Effect of Intergroup Contact on Discrimination


This article investigates the causal effect of intergroup contact on statistical and taste-based discrimination as well as on the associated anticipation effects of the latter, leading to reduced intergroup trust. In our experiment, individuals are randomly assigned to teams comprising ingroup and out-group members or to homogeneous teams, interact in a cooperative task, and
subsequently play different games apt to elicit their discriminatory tastes and beliefs concerning the productivity of in-groups and out-groups. Our contact intervention remedied taste-based discrimination by around 45% but had no significant impact on intergroup trust and on statistical discrimination. Derived lessons for policy makers concerned with the reduction of discrimination involve features that inclusive policies should strive for by changing preferences or beliefs, and thereby reducing different types of discrimination.


Sergio Rubens Mittlaender Leme de Souza

Lisa Lenz

Journal of Economic Psychology
online first