Wednesday, September 9, 2020

In sum, personality is a powerful predictor of life outcomes with few moderated associations, above economic and social indicators

Beck, Emorie D., and Joshua J. Jackson. 2020. “A Mega-analysis of Personality Prediction: Robustness and Boundary Conditions.” PsyArXiv. September 9. doi:10.31234/

Abstract: Decades of studies identify personality traits as an important predictor of life outcomes. However, previous investigations of personality-outcome associations have not taken a principled approach to covariate use or other sampling strategies to ensure the robustness of personality-outcome associations. The result is that it is unclear (1) whether personality predicts important outcomes after accounting for a range of background variables, (2) for whom and when personality predictions hold, and 3) which background variables are most important to account for. The present study examines the robustness and boundary conditions of personality prediction using the Big Five to predict 14 health, social, education/work, and societal outcomes across eight different person- and study-level moderators using individual participant data from 171,395 individuals across 10 longitudinal panel studies in a mega-analytic framework. Robustness and boundary conditions were systematically tested using two approaches: propensity score matching and specification curve analysis. Three findings emerged: First, personality traits remain a robust predictor of life outcomes. Second, the effects generalize, as there are few moderators of personality-outcome associations. Third, robustness was differential across covariate choice in nearly half of the tested models, with the inclusion or exclusion of some of these flipping the direction of association. In sum, personality is a powerful predictor of life outcomes with few moderated associations. However, researchers need to be careful in their choices of covariates. We discuss how these findings can inform personality prediction, as well as recommendations for covariate inclusion.

No Fans, No Home Advantage. Sport Psychological Effects of Missing Supporters on Football Teams in European Top Leagues

Leitner, Michael C., and Fabio Richlan. 2020. “No Fans - No Home Advantage. Sport Psychological Effects of Missing Supporters on Football Teams in European Top Leagues.” PsyArXiv. September 9. doi:10.31234/

Introduction. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, European top football (soccer) leagues played the final rounds of season 2019/20 without or strongly limited attendance of supporters (i.e., “ghost games”). From a sport psychological perspective this situation poses a unique opportunity to investigate the crowd’s influence on sports professionals’ behavior and performance.
Methods. A total of 1286 matches - played in the top leagues of Spain, England, Germany, Italy, Russia, Turkey, Austria and the Czech Republic - were analyzed for result, points, goals, fouls, bookings and reason for booking and contrasted between respective games of season 2018/19 (regular attendance) and season 19/20 (“ghost games”).
Results. There are three main findings. First, the marked home advantage identified in the regular 2018/19 season vanishes almost completely in the “ghost games” of the 2019/20 season. Second, home teams lose significantly more matches, whereas away teams win significantly more matches in “ghost games” compared to regular games. Third, home teams are booked significantly more often with yellow cards for committing fouls in “ghost games” relative to regular games.
Conclusion. We conclude that missing supporters in professional elite football leagues dissolve the “home advantage” effect. The missing support of a “home crowd” has also a direct effect on the experience, behavior and performance of home teams. Therefore home teams tend to compensate with increased aggressive behavior, resulting directly in more fierce tackles and ultimately in significantly more yellow cards awarded for foul play.

Face cells are not passive detectors of a particular constellation of low-level visual characteristics [but] can infer the presence of a face from the association with other objects

What does a “face cell” want?’ J. Taubert, S.G. Wardle, L.G.Ungerleider. Progress in Neurobiology, September 9 2020, 101880.

• We review the evidence that face cells respond more to faces than objects.
• We show evidence that face patches respond to objects with illusory facial features.
• This approach connects the response of face cells to visual perception.

Abstract: In the 1970s Charlie Gross was among the first to identify neurons that respond selectively to faces, in the macaque inferior temporal (IT) cortex. This seminal finding has been followed by numerous studies quantifying the visual features that trigger a response from face cells in order to answer the question; what do face cells want? However, the connection between face-selective activity in IT cortex and visual perception remains only partially understood. Here we present fMRI results in the macaque showing that some face patches respond to illusory facial features in objects. We argue that to fully understand the functional role of face cells, we need to develop approaches that test the extent to which their response explains what we see.

Patterns in Color-Emotion Associations Seem Universal, But Are Further Shaped by Linguistic and Geographic Proximity

Universal Patterns in Color-Emotion Associations Are Further Shaped by Linguistic and Geographic Proximity. Domicele Jonauskaite et al. Psychological Science, September 8, 2020.

Abstract: Many of us “see red,” “feel blue,” or “turn green with envy.” Are such color-emotion associations fundamental to our shared cognitive architecture, or are they cultural creations learned through our languages and traditions? To answer these questions, we tested emotional associations of colors in 4,598 participants from 30 nations speaking 22 native languages. Participants associated 20 emotion concepts with 12 color terms. Pattern-similarity analyses revealed universal color-emotion associations (average similarity coefficient r = .88). However, local differences were also apparent. A machine-learning algorithm revealed that nation predicted color-emotion associations above and beyond those observed universally. Similarity was greater when nations were linguistically or geographically close. This study highlights robust universal color-emotion associations, further modulated by linguistic and geographic factors. These results pose further theoretical and empirical questions about the affective properties of color and may inform practice in applied domains, such as well-being and design.

Keywords: affect, color perception, cross-cultural, universality, cultural relativity, pattern analysis, open data, open materials

Check also 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.

Scientific objectivity _ Explaining Symmetry Across Sex in Intimate Partner Violence advancing core feminist principles: Evolution, Gender Roles, and the Will to Harm

Explaining Symmetry Across Sex in Intimate Partner Violence: Evolution, Gender Roles, and the Will to Harm. Hamel, John. Partner Abuse, Aug 24 2020. DOI: 10.1891/PA-2020-0014

Abstract: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is regarded by key stakeholders involved in shaping arrest and intervention policies as a gendered problem. The prevailing assumptions guiding these policies, centered on patriarchal social structures and men’s motivation to dominate their female partners, have collectively been called the gender paradigm. When states started to enact laws against domestic violence in the late 1970s, it was due to the efforts of battered women and their allies, including second wave feminists fighting for the political, social, and economic advancement of women. The focus was on life-threatening forms of abuse in which women represented, and continue to represent, the much larger share of victims. Since then, IPV has been found to be a more complex problem than originally framed, perpetrated by women as well as men, driven by an assortment of motives, and associated with distal and proximate risk factors that have little to do with gender. Nonetheless, the gender paradigm persists, with public policy lagging behind the empirical evidence. The author suggests some reasons why this is so, among them the much higher rates of violent crimes committed by men, media influence and cognitive biases, political factors, and perpetuation of the very sex-role stereotypes that feminists have sought to extinguish in every other social domain. He then critically reviews two theories used in support of the paradigm, sexual selection theory and social role theory, and explores how empirically driven policies would more effectively lower IPV rates in our communities, while advancing core feminist principles.

Against popular belief, the most attractive faces are not average face: Attractive features are at the outskirts of the natural distribution of face variations, suggesting a selection pressure away from the average

Zhan, Jiayu, Meng Liu, Oliver G. B. Garrod, Christoph Daube, Robin A. A. Ince, Rachael Jack, and Philippe schyns. 2020. “Beauty Is the Eye of the Cultural Beholder.” PsyArXiv. September 8. doi:10.31234/

Abstract: Is face beauty universally perceived from a common basis of objectively definable face features, or is it irreducibly subjective and in the idiosyncratic eye of the cultural, or even individual beholder? We addressed this longstanding debate by objectively modelling the face beauty preferences of 80 individual male participants across Western European (WE) and East Asian (EA) cultures. With state-of-the-art 3D face capture technology, we derived a generative model that synthesized on each trial a random WE or EA female face whose shape and complexion is constrained by natural face variations. Each participant rated the attractiveness of the face on a Likert scale. We then reverse correlated these subjective ratings with the synthesized shape and complexion face parameters to reconstruct individual face models of attractiveness for same and other ethnicity faces. By analyzing the resulting 80 individual models and reconstructing the representation space of face beauty, we addressed several key questions. Against popular belief, we show that the most attractive faces are not average face. Instead, attractive features are at the outskirts of the natural distribution of face variations, suggesting a selection pressure away from the average. Such features also form their own subspace that is separate from cues of sexual dimorphism (i.e. masculine vs. feminine). Finally, we reveal the global preferences of face features across cultures, and specific cultural and individual participant idiosyncrasies. Our results therefore represent face attractiveness in its diversity to inform and impact fundamental theories of human social perception and signalling and the design of globalized digital avatars.

Friend or Foe? Mate Presence and Rival Type Influence Clothing-Based Female Intrasexual Competition

Friend or Foe? Mate Presence and Rival Type Influence Clothing-Based Female Intrasexual Competition. Emily S. Olson, Ella R. Doss & Carin Perilloux. Evolutionary Psychological Science (2020). Sep 4 2020.

Abstract: Evolutionary psychologists have brought attention to women’s intrasexual competition in ways that traditional perspectives have overlooked. Whereas most researchers have thus far focused on exploratory investigations of this phenomenon, we experimentally manipulated contextual factors that could affect intrasexual competition (e.g., rival type, presence of a potential mate) and assessed competitive behavior via clothing choice. Across two studies, female MTurk users (NStudy1 = 131; NStudy2 = 262) read a vignette describing an upcoming party then chose an outfit they would wear to that party from a set of clothing items that had been pre-rated on sexiness and revealingness by a separate sample (N = 100). Within the vignette, we inserted participant-provided initials to manipulate the presence of a crush and the familiarity and attractiveness of their female party companion. Unexpectedly, we found a significant difference between outfit ratings for separates compared with dresses, so we incorporated this into our model. In study 1, among women who chose dresses, those who imagined attending the party with a more attractive acquaintance and their crush present chose more attractive outfits than women in the less attractive acquaintance condition. However, no such pattern was found for women who chose separates or women in the close friend condition. In study 2, a pre-registered direct replication showed that women in the acquaintance condition chose more attractive outfits than women in the close friend condition, but only in the crush present condition. Women’s intrasexual competition mechanisms appear cost-sensitive and only prompt competitive tactics when rivals are particularly threatening.