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Fewer studies take place in 'real-life', in schools or communities for example. For the purposes of summary and analysis, the interventions that are most frequently studied and that are useful for this report can be roughly divided into three categories: Unsurprisingly, education has long been a key area of interest for scholars in all disciplines who have looked at 'what works' to reduce prejudice. 'Show Racism the Red Card' - tackling racism in the context of football). In fact, simply imagining interacting with members of different cultural groups might affect prejudice. (p. 56)". The same is true for colorblindness: If you say to yourself, “I’m not going to notice race!” you are actually more likely to become preoccupied with whether you are thinking about race, which will then make race a more salient category that you spend even more time trying to ignore. Pendry et al (2007) point out that diversity training "differs from the superordinate concept of diversity management in that it does not necessarily imply any background change in system-level structure, decision making or organization ethos" (28). Discrimination in the workplace is a pressing issue that employers face every day. - A review of the evidence, Section Four: Prejudice-Reduction Interventions, Section Two: Definitions, Applicability, And Other Caveats, Section Three: Theories On Prejudice-Reduction. However, a retrospective evaluation carried out by Sutton et al (2007) found that the campaign was not based on the key theories and evidence from the social-psychological literature and empirical studies. This important book combines critical analysis of theories about how to reduce prejudice and discrimination with cutting-edge empirical research conducted in real-world settings, as well as in … This study reminds us that our biases are malleable: Learning about them can give you the self-insight and motivation you need to undertake the journey of change. Decades of social psychology research indicate that promising approaches to reducing prejudice and discrimination include: • increasing intergroup contact; • working to foster greater empathy and perspective-taking when interacting with others; A central criticism regarding diversity training programmes is that they are rarely "guided by the theoretical models of learning or prejudice reduction" (Paluck and Green 2009: 354). Acknowledgment of those things There was a significant improvement in knowledge, and a reduction in negative stereotyping and 'old-fashioned prejudice' (p. 258). School charters emphasising equality and inclusion that are … This lack of evaluation echoes problems raised in previous sections. … A Thank-You to Librarians Who Make Everyone Feel Welcome. Diversity training may involve group discussions about 'difference', based on the same values which are at the heart of educational initiatives: overcoming ignorance; expressing hidden assumptions; and feeling empathy for other groups or individuals (Paluck 2006: 581). Part of the activities included using media to talk about stereotypes - for example, looking at websites such as 'Facing History and Ourselves' to learn more about the history of anti-Semitism. I vividly remember the experience of traveling in Beijing 20 years ago, on the hottest day of the year, and discovering that one could simply not find cold drinking water anywhere (this is no longer true). However, it may be the case that such strategies are still useful in that they address the problem of people wanting to be tolerant and free of prejudice, but still holding implicit bias. References: McLeod, S. A. That test is the Implicit Association Test, which you can take online. Lab-based study: 'A prejudice habit-breaking intervention'. Crucially, the reception of messages and interventions will be influenced by the existing predispositions of participants, so effects will vary. In a previous blog entry, I summarized a study that found that under conditions of cognitive load (when you are mentally busy doing multiple tasks), people were more likely to label a Black child as “aggressive” than they were a White child. Though government regulations certainly help the situation, the real method to reduce gender discrimination is through education and changing the ways that people think about gender roles. An example may be plays or films about a particular type of prejudice. Since individuals are part of the society, these solutions help them reduce prejudice in society overall, thorugh every person’s actions. Being confronted with this evidence was thought to increase awareness of bias, and this awareness was developed through the other aspects of the intervention, such as the training section which provided participants with strategies to overcome these in everyday settings (for example through perspective taking and stereotype replacement). Being active in reducing prejudice may help give you a sense that you are making a difference. Some limitations included that the intervention was limited to four sessions, and the author suggests that more time (for example, a semester-long class) would be more likely to affect change (122). Research by Jacquie Vorauer has shown that when people experience anxiety during intergroup interactions, they also expect their cross-race partners to know how they feel—to know why they are acting awkwardly—and to overestimate the amount of positivity they are conveying during interracial interactions. The two communities remained quite separate after the intervention. Abrams (2010) warns that making people feel guiltier about inequality seems unlikely to be a useful solution - people are prone to reacting defensively (similar to the findings noted in the section on short-term diversity programmes). Being instructed to be empathetic after reading about or watching videos of discrimination, against a stigmatized group, such as African Americans, results in decreased expressions of prejudice, and a stronger willingness to engage in contact with members of the stigmatized group. And because social norms are so important, the behavior of individuals can help create or reduce prejudice and discrimination. It’s like we want to become symbolically immortal by cherishing our cultural traditions even more. Another relatively rare example of evaluated short-term diversity training initiatives are outlined in a 2005 report entitled 'The Search for Tolerance: Challenging and changing racist attitudes and behaviour among young people', produced for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF). Moreover, diversity training programmes are often considered to have potential 'backlash' effects, perhaps as a result of the 'blanket' designs often applied, the short-term nature of most of these initiatives, and delivery not always being sensitive to its environment. Overt racism involves conscious prejudice against members of a particular racial group and can be influenced by both explicit and implicit biases. As discussed in section 3 of this report, the existence of implicit biases mean that even people who are consciously non-prejudiced and consider themselves to be supportive of equality can unintentionally act in prejudiced ways towards others. As anthropologist Richard Shweder reminds us in his Psychology Today blog, the world doesn’t come with one “Truth” or one “Reality.” Rather, what we call Truth is very often a social construction that differs across cultures (this is an issue I explore at length in this article). The intervention took place in the University of Wisconsin, USA, with 91 non-Black participants, and the authors claim that their study "is the first to our knowledge to produce long-term change in implicit bias using a randomized, controlled design" (1276). However, these effects were short-lived, and it is suggested that this was a consequence of a lack of a clear anti-racist purpose, and failure to build on initial signs of potential improvement in relations. improvement in intergroup relations and reduction in prejudice), "they currently operate in a fairly separate fashion with limited dialogue (28)." The first empirical example took place in Australian workplaces with adults, and the second in the UK with children and adolescents in school and community settings. These often take place in corporate workplaces, and with adults as opposed to children and adolescents, though some do focus on younger people. prejudice and discrimination in all forms is a policy priority for the Scottish Government, and this has been a particularly important issue in relation to the on- going work on tackling sectarianism in Scotland. For example, the authors note that the in 'You Me and Us' programme: "Some of the responses suggested that not all the messages had been understood as intended. Two scholars in the field of prejudice and discrimination, Whitley and Kite, offer and overview of solutions that the individual can exert in order to reduce prejudice. Short-term 'diversity training' courses In a 2000 episode of Dateline called “Pride and Prejudice,” Stone Phillips asked viewers whether they would be prepared to take a test to prove that they are not prejudiced. Another key issue is to think about who the interventions are targeting and who they are likely to be missing. Pre and post-test surveys as well as observations were used to test effectiveness of the intervention. This might support the argument that acknowledging and discussing historical events would be helpful in terms of breaking down existing barriers and challenging the residual prejudice apparently stemming from historical conflict and poor relations. And as strategy #7 reminds us, you can spend so much energy worrying about not noticing race that you do worse in your social interactions as a result. Do we face a collective challenge as important as maintaining the camp’s water supply was for the Eagles and Scouts? Of course such figures should be treated with caution - the different studies will each have had different evaluation methods, and the recurring problem of short-term vs. longer term attitude-change will be pertinent here too. Similar lessons could perhaps be learned for media-based interventions. How Can We Reduce Prejudice? Pendry et al (2007) further highlight the separation between theory and practice as they comment that despite diversity trainers and social psychologists having similar objectives (i.e. One method of reducing prejudice -- the contact hypothesis -- assumes that the very nature of requiring people from different social groups to work together reduces prejudicial attitudes among those groups. In practice diversity training programmes are often 'instructional' in form, as a result of lack of planning, resources, and time. But we do have control over our health (to an extent, of course). Describe Allport’s intergroup contact theory and state whether it is supported by research. 2. Prejudice and discrimination have been prevalent throughout human history. So let’s remember that we are not like Professor X. We’re better off a) assuming people from other groups are interested and willing to reach across group boundaries, and b) not assuming other people can correctly intuit the reasons for your anxiety and nervousness. To know why discrimination exists we must first understand what discrimination is. Ah, boys.). Johnson describes a study he conducted in which he showed participants faces of Black and White people; later he showed these participants some of the same faces, mixed in with new ones, and asked the participants to recall whether they had seen each face or not. Interventions took place in various different countries, and all were delivered to young children under the age of eight. Any data collected is anonymised. Fortunately psychologists have seen the damage of prejudice and discrimination and have found that increase contact, demonstrating positive values against prejudice, and education are ways to reduce it. In Education. Don’t be so shallow. Given the popularity of such campaigns, effectiveness might be increased by taking into account some of the lessons discussed in this section. One significant consequence of this was that the campaign conformed to minority ethnic stereotypes, such as 'Asian shopkeepers and doctors and Black footballers' (47). This is particularly important when considering interventions for young children. Describe the Jigsaw classroom and evidence supporting it. Strategies advocated to remove prejudice are (1) non-competitive contact between in and out groups on terms of equal status; (2) the pursuit of common, superordinate goals which are attainable by cooperation. In the same volume, Bargal (2008) describes the effects of an intervention with Israeli and Arab youth in Israel, which focused on reducing conflict and negative stereotypes between the two groups. One option is to become an advocate or volunteer at an organization which aims to reduce prejudice and discrimination. The amygdala is an old (from an evolutionary perspective, relative to other parts of the brain) structure that activates our “fight-or-flight” response, and indicates a threat response that stems, literally, from our very core. Discrimination simply means treating a person unfairly and illustrating prejudice. Even better: Work on that anxiety and nervousness through strategy #1! The most successful educational initiatives discussed in the previous section were designed on the basis of the existing social psychology research, and as the studies outlined here emphasise, such considerations are important for short-term interventions too. The most extensively studied interventions designed to reduce racist prejudice, stereotyping, and discrimination are based on Gordon Allport's (1954) contact theory of intergroup relations. Finding ways to reduce prejudice and discrimination is the central issue in attacking racism in our society. This chimes with the earlier discussion about the discrepancy between people's broad attitudes to equality and their attitudes towards specific measures to work towards this. One young person, however, seems to have come to a slightly different conclusion, saying he had learnt: that you are racist just by booing some ones hat. Although discrimination and prejudice often go hand in hand, there is a difference between the two. Acknowledge differences, rather than try to fight an uphill battle to ignore them. Research by Sam Gaertner and colleagues on the “common ingroup identity model” shows that when we are able to recategorize other people according to features or characteristics that we share, we are more likely to see them as part of “us,” and are therefore less likely to show prejudice towards them. Children’s book author Yuyi Morales writes a gratitude letter to the librarian who had a big impact on her. Though government regulations certainly help the situation, the real method to reduce gender discrimination is through education and changing the ways that people think about gender roles. The programme's objective was to reduce prejudice towards Aboriginal Australians, a group frequently stereotyped, stigmatised, and discriminated against, and to promote knowledge and appreciation of indigenous culture. Feedback through discussions with participants suggested positive short-term effects, as for the duration of the tournament young people from different communities were brought closer together. However in order to maximise appeal, particularly dramatic interpretations of a problem may be deployed. The study was a clustered randomised controlled trial involving 27 primary and secondary schools in Northern Ireland, with a total of 840 children taking part. (Read this piece for more on why playing video games doesn’t necessarily doom for children’s development, particularly when it’s used as a tool for teaching or family closeness.) Moreover, it included a 3 month follow-up, addressing another key limitation of such interventions, in that long-term attitude or behaviour change is rarely captured. How to reduce prejudice among groups of children at school July 17, 2015 9.44am EDT. Diversity training is an industry with huge levels of investment, yet as Abrams (2010) comments, there is "almost no adequate evaluative research" (74). Take Good Care of Yourself and Learn to Cope. As noted earlier in the discussion of what actually constitutes prejudice, there is a complexity that is perhaps not always recognised when designing prejudice-reduction interventions. The Jubilee Football Tournament was run by two housing associations and could be described as a community cohesion project" (1). Racism in this country is nowhere near as blatant or routine as it was 50 years ago. Capitalize on your strengths, and put a plan in motion to compensate for your weaknesses. The final real-life case study is an intervention developed and tested as part of a psycho-educational initiative at various universities across the United States. One of the classic studies in social psychology was conducted by Muzafer Sharif and was called “The Robbers’ Cave Experiment.” In this real-world study, Sharif studied the intergroup attitudes of boys in a summer camp setting. Anti-racism and prejudice reduction campaigns on TV, and public service announcements on radio and billboards, have bee… The solution? In a separate study, psychologist Tiffany Ito found that when she induced participants simply to smile while looking at a set of Black and White faces (Ito had them hold a pencil in their mouth to simulate the experience of smiling—try it! Creative methods are more likely to attract and engage participants. If I tell you, “No matter what you do, do not think about a Pink Elephant,” you are actually more likely to think about that elephant. And as the Australian study showed, these should take place in a broader context of commitment to diversity and anti-racism, with institutional and cultural change. They all hold completely different meanings while being related to each other. Other techniques that are used to reduce prejudice include: Gaining public support and awareness for anti-prejudice social norms Increasing contact with members of other social groups The training course involved group discussion, role-play and videos, and was facilitated by Aboriginal employees (the target outgroup). Your feedback will help us improve this site, What works to reduce prejudice and discrimination? Firstly, effects seemed to reduce after the 3 month period. A diverse workplace adds value to your company and ensures a fresh mix of ideas, talent and energy. It’s the new year, and many of us are likely to make New Year’s resolutions to lose weight, work out, and get healthy. 4. In that spirit, I’ve compiled a list of my own: the top ten strategies for reducing prejudice and improving intergroup relations. A recent intervention with a rigorous longitudinal evaluation is the 'Promoting Reconciliation through a Shared Curriculum Experience Programme' report, published 2013. When asked about what led to the lack of intergroup contact, each group correctly said that they themselves avoided contact because of their fears of rejection, but incorrectly attributed the other group’s avoidance to lack of interest. Media campaigns - for example, by campaign organisations, the Government, or criminal justice agencies - are also extremely popular, and frequently used with the intention of promoting change through raising awareness and challenging attitudes and stereotypes. Solutions and theories to reduce discrimnation at the individual level are based on emotional and cognitive processes that results in “changes in intergroup attitudes” (Whitley & Kite, 2009). ('British', male)" (28). It is questionable whether compulsory attendance at a workplace 'diversity' training course, for example, which may be one-day in length, and often shorter, would satisfy this criteria. The programme was carried out in a 'curriculum only' or 'contact & curriculum' basis, to test the 'contact' effect (shared learning) as well as the impact of talking about the issues. A particularly useful lab-based intervention to include as a case study is Devine et al (2012) 'Long-term reduction in implicit race bias: A prejudice habit-breaking intervention'. We have established that prejudice often exists in subtle, everyday manifestations. It happens at sporting events, too: People are united by a shared identity and the other differences melt away. and not, as interpreted here, a recipe. Magazine • unless the second line is commentary about results, Tower Hamlets Summer University is a voluntary sector, informal education project. In other words, those who challenge our cultural worldview become a threat to our continued immortality, and we grow intolerant of them. Given that we have already established the difference between many people's intentions regarding equality and their attitudes to the implementation of measures which aim to actually tackle inequality, it is likely that such interventions would address an important discrepancy. It perhaps falls into the what 'should' work category when talking about reducing prejudice, but the theoretical research encourages us to be careful in this respect. From the GGSC to your bookshelf: 30 science-backed tools for well-being. Importantly, the study noted improvement of attitudes over time, perhaps as people became increasingly self-aware and used the strategies taught to overcome instances of prejudice. But what they argue, firstly, is that this reduction cannot occur unless the individual recognizes his discriminative … Some general limitations of diversity training courses which are similar to those highlighted in the educational initiatives section are also worth mentioning. The most important intervention elements remain contact and education which encourages a self-critical approach. As discussed in the previous section, discussing group difference can be positive in terms of improving attitudes towards out-groups, however it is important that these discussions are handled carefully. This study has demonstrated that empowering youth to take on a leadership role, such as a peer educator, positively affects the youth leader. Theory tells us that prejudice-reduction interventions can backfire if they are regarded as 'favouring' certain groups, or if they reinforce stereotypes, yet this does not appear to have been fully appreciated. For instance, some of them talk about successful interventions to improve intergroup relations in post-conflict societies, which may be dealing with tensions that often spills over into actual (violent) conflict, and we may also assume that these are likely to be more 'reactive' than preventative. This is important: an organisation with management dominated by middle-class white men compelling its staff to attend 'diversity training' may appear insincere if a commitment to diversity is not shown in the institution as a whole. Section Five: Reflection, Limitations, And Applicability - What Can We Learn? The report claims that the intervention helped to challenge everyday understandings about 'outgroups', particularly in the context of Catholic-Protestant relations. Liberal and conservative brains respond differently to political messages, a new study finds. Try fried grasshoppers in Thailand, or haggling for the price of your weekly groceries in Ivory Coast. In relation to the colorblind studies, which I have read directly, I always wish there was a way to study them outside of our culture. Tis the season for countdowns—of the past year’s best movies, albums, news stories, and more. Notwithstanding the limitations associated with self-reporting through questionnaires, participation in the programme appeared to have positive effects, with a significant proportion claiming to have "a better understanding of the complexities and subtleties of racism and cultural difference" (28). Why? When Sharif put the boys in direct competition with one another (e.g., when medals or prizes were at stake), Sharif found that the boys were less likely to have friends on the other team and showed an increase in aggressive behavior towards members of the other team (e.g., putting their underwear in the freezer. The upshot here? The project brought different ethnic groups together at two diverse Midwestern High Schools in the United States[2]. Using the contact hypothesis could potentially help reduce the amount of prejudice and discrimination in the world. 2. Stukas et. Reducing Discrimination through Education. discrimination) for the social status inequalities which children are … Having summarised some of the important theoretical contributions to prejudice-reduction, I will now present a summary of the main types of interventions with evidence on effectiveness, drawing on case studies and suggesting some principles which may be usefully applied elsewhere. Can practicing mindfulness make us wiser? The Greater Good Science Center studies the psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being, and teaches skills that foster a thriving, resilient, and compassionate society. There is a strong suggestion that programmes can reinforce inequalities/discrimination felt by minority participants by drawing attention to difference. You can write or call your elected officials to ask them to change discriminatory laws. And the rest will follow Describe ways to promote tolerance and improve intergroup relations. 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