Thursday, September 19, 2019

Overconfidence over the Lifespan, Evidence from Germany: Both the level of relative placement and the overplacement probability increase with age up to one's fifties

Overconfidence over the Lifespan: Evidence from Germany. Tim Friehe, Markus Pannenberg. Journal of Economic Psychology, September 20 2019, 102207. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.joep.2019.102207

Abstract: This paper investigates if and how overconfidence at the individual level changes over the course of a life. We provide age profiles of a novel continuous overconfidence measure and the probability of being overconfident, conditioning on personality traits (including the Big 5 and optimism), economic preferences, cognitive ability, and the individual's socio-economic status. Our empirical work relies on representative panel data sets from Germany, and individuals' both self-assessed and actual percentile in the monthly gross wage distribution are incorporated in our measure of overconfidence. We find that both the level of relative placement and the overplacement probability increase with age up to one's fifties.


Find considerable evidence of hot hand shooting in and across individuals, supporting fans' and experts' widely held belief in the hot hand among NBA shooters

Miller, Joshua B., and Adam Sanjurjo. 2018. “Is It a Fallacy to Believe in the Hot Hand in the NBA Three-point Contest?.” OSF Preprints. October 30. doi:10.31219/osf.io/dmksp

Abstract: The NBA Three-Point Contest has been considered an ideal setting to study the hot hand, as it showcases the elite professional shooters that hot hand beliefs are typically directed towards, but in an environment that eliminates many of the confounds present in game action. We collect 29 years of NBA Three-Point Contest television broadcast data (1986-2015), apply a statistical approach that improves on those of previous studies, and find considerable evidence of hot hand shooting in and across individuals. Our results support fans' and experts' widely held belief in the hot hand among NBA shooters.

Examination of 55 countries: Yellow is more joyful in colder and rainier ones

The sun is no fun without rain: Physical environments affect how we feel about yellow across 55 countries. Domicele Jonauskaite et al. Journal of Environmental Psychology, September 19 2019, 101350. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2019.101350

Highlights
•    Yellow is associated with joy across the world.
•    This association might originate from yellow reminding of sun and warmth.
•    We analysed yellow-joy associations collected in 55 countries.
•    Yellow is more joyful in colder and rainier countries.
•    This joyfulness seems stable; it was independent of the current season.

Abstract: Across cultures, people associate colours with emotions. Here, we test the hypothesis that one driver of this cross-modal correspondence is the physical environment we live in. We focus on a prime example – the association of yellow with joy, – which conceivably arises because yellow is reminiscent of life-sustaining sunshine and pleasant weather. If so, this association should be especially strong in countries where sunny weather is a rare occurrence. We analysed yellow-joy associations of 6625 participants from 55 countries to investigate how yellow-joy associations varied geographically, climatologically, and seasonally. We assessed the distance to the equator, sunshine, precipitation, and daytime hours. Consistent with our hypotheses, participants who live further away from the equator and in rainier countries are more likely to associate yellow with joy. We did not find associations with seasonal variations. Our findings support a role for the physical environment in shaping the affective meaning of colour.

From 2018... Disgust as a Mechanism for Decision Making Under Risk: For a given potential benefit, males in an effectively-polygynous mating system accept the risk of harm more willingly than do females

From 2018... Disgust as a Mechanism for Decision Making Under Risk: Illuminating Sex Differences and Individual Risk-Taking Correlates of Disgust Propensity. Adam M Sparks et al. Emotion, Vol 18(7), Oct 2018, 942-958 https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Femo0000389

The emotion disgust motivates costly behavioral strategies that mitigate against potentially larger costs associated with pathogens, sexual behavior, and moral transgressions. Because disgust thereby regulates exposure to harm, it is by definition a mechanism for calibrating decision making under risk. Understanding this illuminates two features of the demographic distribution of this emotion. First, this approach predicts and explains sex differences in disgust. Greater female disgust propensity is often reported and discussed in the literature, but, to date, conclusions have been based on informal comparisons across a small number of studies, while existing functionalist explanations are at best incomplete. We report the results of an extensive meta-analysis documenting this sex difference, arguing that key features of this pattern are best explained as one manifestation of a broad principle of the evolutionary biology of risk-taking: for a given potential benefit, males in an effectively-polygynous mating system accept the risk of harm more willingly than do females. Second, viewing disgust as a mechanism for decision making under risk likewise predicts that individual differences in disgust propensity should correlate with individual differences in various forms of risky behavior, because situational and dispositional factors that influence valuation of opportunity and hazard are often correlated across multiple decision contexts. In two large-sample online studies, we find consistent associations between disgust and risk avoidance. We conclude that disgust and related emotions can be usefully examined through the theoretical lens of decision making under risk in light of human evolution.

The End of a Stereotype: Only Children Are Not More Narcissistic Than People With Siblings

The End of a Stereotype: Only Children Are Not More Narcissistic Than People With Siblings. Michael Dufner et al. Social Psychological and Personality Science, September 19, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1177/1948550619870785

Abstract: The current research dealt with the stereotype that only children are more narcissistic than people with siblings. We first investigated the prevalence of this stereotype. In an online study (Study 1, N = 556), laypeople rated a typical only child and a typical person with siblings on narcissistic admiration and narcissistic rivalry, the two subdimensions of the Narcissistic Admiration and Rivalry Questionnaire. They ascribed both higher admiration and higher rivalry to the only child. We then tested the accuracy of this stereotype by analyzing data from a large and representative panel study (Study 2, N = 1,810). The scores of only children on the two narcissism dimensions did not exceed those of people with siblings, and this result held when major potentially confounding covariates were controlled for. Taken together, the results indicate that the stereotype that only children are narcissistic is prevalent but inaccurate.

Keywords narcissism, development, only children, stereotypes

From 2016... The Double Edged Drug: Is Widespread Alcohol Use Crucial to the Development and Functioning of Modern, Democratic, and Peaceful Courting Societies?

From 2016... The Double Edged Drug: Is Widespread Alcohol Use Crucial to the Development and Functioning of Modern, Democratic, and Peaceful Courting Societies? Gregory S. Paul. International Journal of Business and Social Science, Vol. 7, No. 12; December 2016.

Abstract: Despite legal alcohol being consumed by the great majority in most nations, there is surprisingly little research regarding the grand impact of its use on societies, and even less on its nonuse by persons and cultures. Correlations find significant relationships between levels of alcohol consumption, gender equality,and sociopolitical conditions, with the latter two being the best when alcohol intake is moderately high. Experimentation and observation have shown that alcohol is an effective social lubricant, especially in situations regarding courting and initial sexual encounters. It is proposed that widespread use of legal alcohol is an important prerequisite for the courting cultures that has to be present for women to enjoy the sociosexual freedom thatis necessary for the development of the advanced democratic politics that in turn generate the highest levels of socioeconomic prosperity and security. Societies that ban alcohol are correspondingly apparently unable to achieve gender equality, full democracy,and prosperity, and the common Islamic religious prohibition may be a critical factor in the difficulty of Muslim nations in achieving sociopolitical modernity. Nonuse can also adversely impact individuals by hindering their ability to socialize, including sexually, although nonuse also has it positives. Excessive use of alcohol is also detrimental on a national scale, although not as much as is nonuse.

Keywords: alcohol, ethanol, legal, prohibition, gender equality, sexual activity, socioeconomics, democracy, Islam.

Belief in free will is associated with lower indecisiveness; however, one boundary condition of this effect is that it is limited to individuals with high self-concept clarity

Freeing or freezing decisions? Belief in free will and indecisiveness. Michail D. Kokkoris, Roy F. Baumeister, UlrichK├╝hnen. Processes, Volume 154, September 2019, Pages 49-61.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.obhdp.2019.08.002

Highlights
•  Tests two competing hypotheses about the relation between free will and indecisiveness.
•  The evolutionary hypothesis would predict that free will reduces indecisiveness.
•  The existentialist hypothesis would predict that free will increases indecisiveness.
•  Results show that belief in free will is associated with lower indecisiveness.
•  This effect is limited to individuals with higher self-concept clarity.

Abstract: Does belief in free will free or freeze decision-making? The existentialist hypothesis, rooted in views of free will as a source of anguish and hesitation, would predict that free will impedes decisions by increasing indecisiveness. In contrast, the evolutionary hypothesis, rooted in views of free will as a driver of effective social functioning, would predict that free will facilitates decisions by reducing indecisiveness. Results of five studies using various measures of indecisiveness (trait) and indecision (state), various operationalizations of free will beliefs (measured and manipulated), and various decision tasks provide support to the evolutionary hypothesis. Belief in free will is consistently associated with lower indecisiveness. However, one boundary condition of this effect is that it is limited to individuals with high self-concept clarity. These findings contribute to the literature on indecisiveness and advance our knowledge about the benefits of belief in free will for decision-making.

Keywords: Free willIndecisivenessSelf-concept clarityDecision-makingExistentialism

Both grandmothers and grandfathers reported higher rate of life satisfaction and quality of life than non-grandparents; grandmothers reported fewer depressive symptoms than women without grandchildren

Transition to Grandparenthood and Subjective Well-Being in Older Europeans: A Within-Person Investigation Using Longitudinal Data. Antti O. Tanskanen et al. Evolutionary Psychology, September 18, 2019. https://doi.org/10.1177/1474704919875948

Abstract: The transition to grandparenthood, that is the birth of the first grandchild, is often assumed to increase the subjective well-being of older adults; however, prior studies are scarce and have provided mixed results. Investigation of the associations between grandparenthood and subjective well-being, measured by self-rated life satisfaction, quality of life scores, and depressive symptoms, used the longitudinal Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe from 13 countries, including follow-up waves between 2006 and 2015 (n = 64,940 person-observations from 38,456 unique persons of whom 18,207 had two or more measurement times). Both between-person and within-person (or fixed-effect) regression models were executed, where between-person associations represent results across individuals, that is, between grandparents and non-grandparents; within-person associations represent an individual’s variation over time, that is, they consider whether the transition to grandparenthood increases or decreases subjective well-being. According to the between-person models, both grandmothers and grandfathers reported higher rate of life satisfaction and quality of life than non-grandparents. Moreover, grandmothers reported fewer depressive symptoms than women without grandchildren. The within-person models indicated that entry into grandmotherhood was associated with both improved quality of life scores and improved life satisfaction. These findings are discussed with reference to inclusive fitness theory, parental investment theory, and the grandmother hypothesis.

Keywords: Fixed-effect regression, grandmother hypothesis, inclusive fitness theory, parental investment theory, Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe, subjective well-being, transition to grandparenthood

Representation of the breast: According to the specific nerve architecture that underlies breast sensation, where the medial & lateral sides of one breast are asymmetrically represented in bilateral primary somatosensory cortex

Somatotopic mapping of the human breast using 7 T functional MRI. Jop Beugels et al. NeuroImage, September 18 2019, 116201. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neuroimage.2019.116201

Highlights
•    Stimulation of the breast resulted in a robust response on the dorsal surface of S1.
•    Unilateral breast stimulation resulted in bilateral activity in S1.
•    Medial and lateral breast sides are asymmetrically represented in both hemispheres.
•    The nipple cluster is larger, more selective and more responsive than other parts.
•    No gender differences in the magnitude of cortical responses and representations.

Abstract: How are tactile sensations in the breast represented in the female and male brain? Using ultra high-field 7 T MRI in ten females and ten males, we demonstrate that the representation of tactile breast information shows a somatotopic organization, with cortical magnification of the nipple. Furthermore, we show that the core representation of the breast is organized according to the specific nerve architecture that underlies breast sensation, where the medial and lateral sides of one breast are asymmetrically represented in bilateral primary somatosensory cortex. Finally, gradual selectivity signatures allude to a somatotopic organization of the breast area with overlapping, but distinctive, cortical representations of breast segments. Our univariate and multivariate analyses consistently showed similar somatosensory breast representations in males and females. The findings can guide future research on neuroplastic reorganization of the breast area, across reproductive life stages, and after breast surgery.

The Limits of Nudging: Can Descriptive Social Norms Be Used to Reduce Meat Consumption? It seems that nudging was a total failure.

Brachem, Johannes, Henry Kr├╝dewagen, and York Hagmayer. 2019. “The Limits of Nudging: Can Descriptive Social Norms Be Used to Reduce Meat Consumption? It's Probably Not That Easy.” PsyArXiv. September 19. doi:10.31234/osf.io/xk58q

Abstract: A high level of meat consumption is associated with high emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) and significantly contributes to anthropogenic climate change. One promising approach to reduce meat consumption without restrictions to freedom of choice might be the use of descriptive social norms as nudging interventions. We report two preregistered, randomized experiments (N1 = 450 and N2 = 899) in which we investigated whether written displays of true descriptive social norms about the rising popularity of vegetarian and vegan meals can be used to effectively nudge people towards more sustainable food choices, i.e. reduced meat consumption. Additionally, the main effect of subjects’ environmental attitude and a possible interaction of the social norms intervention and environmental attitude were examined. Participants were asked to choose one of five meals in 29 (Exp. 1) and 28 (Exp. 2) trials, resulting in a total of 38,222 observations. Subjects with a higher environmental attitude were more likely to choose meat-free meals, OR1 = 3.50, [2.84, 4.32]; OR2 = 2.79, [2.40, 3.23]. The results of both experiments showed no significant effect of the social norms intervention on subjects’ likelihood to select meat-free meals, OR1 = 0.73, 95% CI [0.49, 1.09]; OR2 = 0.97, [0.81, 1.16], and no interaction of the intervention with environmental attitude. An exploratory analysis suggested that subjects chose more meat-free meals if those made up a bigger portion of the offer. The results are discussed with regard to possible explanations, including a potentially high context-dependency of the efficacy of social norms interventions. The data, materials and preregistrations are available from https://osf.io/ruyfs/.