Phd meeting in Social and Organizational Psychology edition:5 location:Lisbon, Portugal date:28-29 May, 2009
The current work integrates insights from intergroup relations research on homogeneity and social perception research on entitativity. The authors tested the effect of the social context on perceived entitativity and perceived homogeneity of an ingroup and an outgroup. To this purpose, an experiment conducted among American undergraduates examined their perceptions of the social categories “Americans” and “Europeans”. For perceptions of homogeneity, an outgroup homogeneity effect was obtained in a single group context but this effect disappeared in a social comparison context. For perceptions of entitativity, there was no substantial difference in perceived entitativity in a single group context but an ingroup entitativity effect emerged when social comparison was made salient. The findings are discussed in terms of differences in the social meaning of the often confounded constructs of group entitativity and homogeneity and in terms of differences between perceptions of ingroups and outgroups.