Thursday, July 22, 2021

Manufacturer–distributor relationships: Deceptive manifestations of infidelity; the possible passive, mild, or aggressive consequences of infidelity; the pre-emptive or post hoc measures that need to be taken to cure infidelity

Unveiling the infidelity problem in exclusive manufacturer–distributor relationships: A dyadic perspective, Leonidas C. Leonidou, Bilge Aykol, John Hadjimarcou, Dayananda Palihawadana. Psychology & Marketing, July 17 2021.

Abstract: Infidelity has been a common dark-side phenomenon in manufacturer–distributor (M–D) relationships, which, despite its harmful effects on operating performance and long-term viability, has received scant theoretical and empirical attention in marketing research. Using data collected from 103 manufacturers and 101 distributors located in the USA, we investigate this phenomenon by conceptualizing it as a developmental process, comprising motives, symptoms, manifestations, consequences, and remedies. Our findings show that, with a few exceptions, there are no significant differences between manufacturers and distributors with regard to their perceptions of: (a) the structural, processual, and contextual factors contributing to the emergence of infidelity; (b) the behavioral and attitudinal factors helping to diagnose partner infidelity; (c) the ambiguous, explicit, and deceptive manifestations of infidelity; (d) the possible passive, mild, or aggressive consequences of infidelity; and (e) the pre-emptive or post hoc measures that need to be taken to cure infidelity.

Incarcerated individuals: Stronger associations for disinhibition with substance use problems, self-harm, and staff ratings of prison misbehavior among females compared to males

Testing for Sex Differences in the Nomological Network of the Triarchic Model of Psychopathy in Incarcerated Individuals. Claudio Sica, Emily R. Perkins, Keanan J. Joyner, Corrado Caudek, Gioia Bottesi, Maria Caruso, Paolo Giulini, Marta Ghisi & Christopher J. Patrick. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, Jul 16 2021.

Abstract: The triarchic model of psychopathy conceptualizes variants of this clinical condition as expressions of three distinct biobehavioral dispositions, termed boldness, meanness, and disinhibition. As a trait-oriented model, the triarchic model situates psychopathy within a broader nomological network of personality and psychopathology, and has proven useful for characterizing how psychopathy relates to variables in these domains as well as to biological and behavioral variables. The current study was the first to examine sex differences in the external correlates of psychopathic traits as described by the triarchic model in a prison sample. Results were generally consistent with hypotheses: The triarchic traits related to measures of personality and psychopathology in patterns that were largely consistent across sex, but with some notable differences between males and females, in the correlates of disinhibition in particular. These included stronger associations for disinhibition with substance use problems, self-harm, and staff ratings of prison misbehavior among females compared to males. Findings from this study support the value of the triarchic model for understanding similarities and differences in the nomological network of psychopathy in incarcerated males and females.


This study sought to elucidate sex differences in the nomological network of the triarchic model of psychopathy among incarcerated individuals, adding to scientific understanding about the model’s external validity. Findings generally complement and extend prior work comparing males and females in non-incarcerated populations and overcome an important limitation of the existing literature: a reliance on the PCL-R and related measures, which emphasize crime-related aspects of psychopathy to the exclusion of adaptive features. The triarchic model of psychopathy is designed to capture dispositional characteristics that may be expressed in a variety of phenotypes, including engagement in crime. The current study examined other manifestations of the triarchic traits — i.e., patterns of relations to other relevant constructs, such as personality and psychopathology — within a sample characterized by elevated engagement in crime, as well as investigating sex differences in these patterns.

The Triarchic Model in a Prison Sample

The current results advance scientific understanding of the triarchic model in a prison sample. Broadly, findings were consistent with hypotheses based on previous studies. Consistent with the theoretical conceptualization of boldness and with prior research (e.g., Sica et al., 2015), we found in this mixed-sex prison sample that TriPM Boldness was negatively associated with certain maladaptive constructs such as neuroticism and hopelessness, suggesting it adequately represents some aspects of psychological resilience against distress in an incarcerated sample (see Gottfried et al., 2019). Interestingly, and contrary to hypotheses, boldness was unrelated to self-harm in this sample; it may that this trait is less closely tied to behavioral expressions of distress than to the psychological experience itself. Importantly, despite its generally negative relations with distress measures, boldness was predictive of greater substance use problems and lower staff ratings of prison behavior and reintegration prognosis following release. These results are in line with other findings suggesting that boldness does not merely index positive adjustment (Lilienfeld et al., 20122018; cf. Miller & Lynam, 2012). Multiple studies have found positive associations between boldness and various forms of maladaptive behavior (e.g., Anestis et al., 2018; Baroncelli et al., in press; Coffey et al., 2018; Hicks et al., 2014), including in prison samples (Sellbom et al., 2018). Notably, however, a previous study of incarcerated males found boldness to be associated with lower structured clinical judgments of risk for future violence (Sellbom et al., 2018), in contrast to the present results regarding current prison behavior and reintegration prognosis. Further research is needed to understand boldness and behavior in correctional settings.

Relations between TriPM Meanness and FFM traits were generally consistent with expectations, particularly the strong negative association with agreeableness. In this prison sample, as in non-incarcerated samples, triarchic meanness is closely linked to the FFM construct of antagonism (i.e., low agreeableness; see Poy et al., 2014). Interestingly, and contrary to hypotheses, meanness was uniquely associated with low conscientiousness, even after accounting for its relationship with disinhibition. It may be that the uncaring, detached features of meanness are expressed as disregard for personal responsibilities in the prison context; however, this association did not appear to extend to overt disciplinary problems, given the null correlation between meanness and staff ratings of prison behavior. Finally, meanness was positively associated with all facets of hopelessness but was unrelated to substance problems or self-harm. Meanness includes a prominent element of cynicism that may result in elevated hopelessness scores (e.g., Berg et al., 2013; Sellbom et al., 2018) despite null relations with other distress-related problems.

Consistent with its nomological net, disinhibition was uniquely associated with high neuroticism, low conscientiousness, and low agreeableness. Further, as expected, disinhibition was positively related to substance use problems, hopelessness, and self-harm. This finding is consistent with prior evidence that disinhibition constitutes a liability factor for myriad forms of psychopathology that involve poor emotional or behavioral control (Buchman-Schmitt et al., 2017; Patrick et al., 2013ab; Perkins et al., 2019). Finally, negative associations were noted for disinhibition with staff ratings of prison behavior and reintegration prognosis. These are consistent with a prior study using structured risk assessments (Sellbom et al., 2018) and may reflect the persistently unrestrained, irresponsible tendencies exhibited by those high in disinhibition both inside and outside the prison setting.

Sex Differences in External Correlates of the Triarchic Traits

Regarding the central theme of the current paper, the main result was that the similarities between sexes outnumbered the differences. First, males and females did not differ in mean scores on TriPM Boldness or Meanness. This finding accords with some prior prison studies utilizing the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI; Lilienfeld & Andrews, 1996), another personality-based measure of psychopathy, which have found few mean-level differences between males and females on fearless dominance (akin to boldness; e.g., Sellbom et al., 2017). However, our result is in contrast to the literature for undergraduates and forensic mental health evaluees reviewed above, in which higher boldness and meanness scores have typically been reported for males as compared to females. One explanation may be that females in our unselected prison sample were less affected by normative gender socialization forces over development than community females, contributing to their engagement in crime as well as their relatively elevated boldness and meanness (see Letendre, 2007; Scott & Mikell, 2019). Relatively similar levels of boldness and meanness across sexes would plausibly be observed in an unselected prison sample such as ours, containing individuals with and without mental illness, but not in a forensic sample (Anestis et al., 2019; Sellbom et al., 2017), in which mental illness may have played a greater role than gender socialization in females’ engagement in crime (Blanchette & Brown, 2019; Fazel & Grann, 2006; Flynn et al., 2011).

As expected, participant sex did not moderate observed relations of boldness with most criterion variables. Boldness is theorized to involve reduced sensitivity of the brain’s defensive reactivity system to cues signaling threat or punishment (e.g., Patrick et al., 2019; Yancey et al., 2016). Operating from this perspective, it appears that dispositional fearlessness manifested similarly for males and females in the current study — except in terms of its impact on staff ratings of behavior within the prison and social connections outside, where in each case associations for boldness were more negative in females than in males. One potential interpretation of this unanticipated result is that some aspects of boldness may be viewed by others as adaptive in males but maladaptive in females; for example, social dominance may be seen by raters as either “leadership” or “pushiness,” depending on the sex of the evaluee. Another possibility is that boldness may be expressed more in terms of manipulativeness or erratic behaviors in incarcerated females than in males. For instance, the affective-interpersonal (Factor 1) features of psychopathy are closely linked to borderline personality disorder symptoms in females, but not males (Verona et al., 2012). Females high in boldness might rely on manipulation or relational aggression to achieve their goals to a greater extent than high-bold males (see also Crick & Grotpeter, 1995; Robbins et al., 2003). These behaviors could plausibly result in poorer social relationships and more disciplinary issues inside the prison. However, since this finding was not hypothesized, it requires replication and should be interpreted with caution until replicated.

Based on the literature, we anticipated that sex would moderate the expression of meanness in particular with regard to distress symptomatology and personality. As meanness involves dysfunction in affective and affiliative systems (Palumbo et al., 2020; Viding & McCrory, 2019), its expression was hypothesized to be influenced by gender norms and females’ socialization to be warm and cooperative (Eagly, 2009). Although no Sex x Meanness interaction effects were significant in this sample, some approached significance, with meanness tending to relate more strongly to increases in BHS Lack of Motivation and decreases in DSHI Versatility in females than males. Although the former effect would be consistent with hypotheses, further research is needed with larger samples to achieve adequate power.

The majority of points of divergence between sexes concerned the trait of disinhibition. First, mean levels of disinhibition were higher for females than males in this prison sample. This finding contrasts with prior research in a forensic mental health sample that demonstrated higher disinhibition among males (Anestis et al., 2019), and with undergraduate samples that showed similar levels across sex (e.g., Drislane & Patrick, 2017). Higher levels of disinhibition may need to be present, on average, for females to engage in crime, given that socialization processes may otherwise inhibit such behavior (Leve et al., 2005).

Sex differences were also observed in the associations of disinhibition with other variables. In particular, TriPM Disinhibition in females was more closely associated with self-harm than in males. Consistent with these findings, impulsivity, aggression, and hostility — constructs central to the nomological network of disinhibition — are more often manifested as self-directed violence and self-harm in females than in males (Sadeh et al., 2011). Related concepts of emotion dysregulation, affective instability, and ineffective emotion regulation strategies are also elevated among females high in psychopathy relative to their male counterparts (de Vogel & Lancel, 2016; Kreis & Cooke, 2011; Sica et al., 2015; Verona et al., 2012). Females may be socialized to express problems through emotional dysregulation (internalizing; Keenan & Shaw, 1997). Another possible explanation involves the fact that disinhibition is influenced by the early environment (Tuvblad et al., 2019) and is correlated with a history of abuse (Gottfried et al., 2019; Graham et al., 2012; Verona et al., 2005). Given that trauma is extremely common among incarcerated females (DeHart et al., 2014; Lynch et al., 2012), such experiences could play a role in the sex-differentiated expression of disinhibition as emotion dysregulation. This explanation could also account for our finding that disinhibition was associated with greater increases in substance use among females than males, as the association between post-traumatic stress and substance use depends on the presence of emotion dysregulation (Tull et al., 2015), especially among women (Bornovalova et al., 2009). Although our substance use results contrast with findings from a forensic mental health clinic sample (Anestis et al., 2019), it is possible that the lower rate of comorbid serious mental illness in our unselected prison sample resulted in clearer sex differences in the degree to which substance use is driven by distress. Nevertheless, as with other mechanistic possibilities offered throughout this paper, these inferences remain to be explicitly tested.

Disinhibition also predicted staff ratings of misbehavior in prison to a greater degree in females than in males. Such a result is particularly important given that among incarcerated females, PCL-R scores do not predict violent behavior, verbal aggression, or noncompliance within the prison setting (Salekin et al., 1997). In this respect, as a trait-based approach rooted in models of personality, the triarchic model may hold promise for improving risk assessment among incarcerated females. However, this result requires replication.

Strengths, Limitations, and Directions

A notable strength of the current study is its use of a mixed-sex prison sample and the examination of external correlates considered to be of particular importance to this population (e.g., substance problems, self-harm, institutional behavior problems). This design allowed us to undertake, for the first time in an unselected prison sample, direct comparisons of the external correlates of the triarchic model across males and females. In addition, our sample was composed of individuals charged with serious crimes and who had several prior convictions; thus, the crime-history profile of our participants was distinctly severe.

The current study also has certain limitations. First, our sample consisted of incarcerated individuals from the nation of Italy, and thus our results may not generalize to individuals from other cultures and ethnic backgrounds. In addition, although the inclusion of staff-rated criterion variables was a strength, the psychometric properties of these measures are unknown, and it is unclear to what degree gender bias may have played a role in ratings. However, the incorporation of multiple sources of data in these ratings (e.g., police reports) may mitigate these concerns somewhat. Finally, although the focus of this study was on external validation, there is also a need for research on the internal psychometric properties of the TriPM in prison samples. This work will require larger samples of incarcerated females in particular (here, n=83) and could include structural analysesFootnote3 and examinations of measurement invariance across sexes. A larger sample would also allow for an examination of the interactive and configural effects of triarchic dimensions (e.g., variants of psychopathy) in predicting important clinical criteria across sex.

Scholars of diversity training, when testing the efficacy of their approaches, too often use proxy measures for success that are far removed from the types of consequential outcomes that reflect the purported goals of such trainings

Diversity Training Goals, Limitations, and Promise: A Review of the Multidisciplinary Literature. Patricia G. Devine and Tory L. Ash. Annual Review of Psychology, Vol. 73:-, publication date January 2022, online on July 19, 2021.

Abstract: In this review, we utilize a narrative approach to synthesize the multidisciplinary literature on diversity training. In examining hundreds of articles on the topic, we discovered that the literature is amorphous and complex and does not allow us to reach decisive conclusions regarding best practices in diversity training. We note that scholars of diversity training, when testing the efficacy of their approaches, too often use proxy measures for success that are far removed from the types of consequential outcomes that reflect the purported goals of such trainings. We suggest that the enthusiasm for, and monetary investment in, diversity training has outpaced the available evidence that such programs are effective in achieving their goals. We recommend that researchers and practitioners work together for future investigations to propel the science of diversity training forward. We conclude with a roadmap for how to create a more rigorous and relevant science of diversity training.

Those who gain a good reputation are often preferred as interaction partners, but excessively generous individuals risk losing their good reputation, and even being vilified, ostracised or antisocially punished

No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: the social costs of prosocial behaviour. Nichola J Raihani & Eleanor A Power- Evolutionary Human Sciences, Jul 2021. DOI: 10.1017/ehs.2021.35

Abstract: Performing costly helpful behaviours can allow individuals to improve their reputation. Those who gain a good reputation are often preferred as interaction partners and are consequently better able to access support through cooperative relationships with others. But investing in prosocial displays can sometimes yield social costs: excessively generous individuals risk losing their good reputation, and even being vilified, ostracised or antisocially punished. As a consequence, people frequently try to downplay their prosocial actions or hide them from others. In this review, we explore when and why investments in prosocial behaviour are likely to yield social costs. We propose two key features of interactions that make it more likely that generous individuals will incur social costs when:  (i) observers infer that helpful behaviour is motivated by strategic or selfish motives; and (ii) observers infer that helpful behaviour is detrimental to them. We describe how the cognition required to consider ulterior motives emerges over development and how these tendencies vary across cultures – and discuss how the potential for helpful actions to result in social costs might place boundaries on prosocial behaviour as well as limiting the contexts in which it might occur. We end by outlining the key avenues and priorities for future research. 

Keywords: prosocial behaviour, reputation, modesty, cooperation, partner choice, morality

Preferences for attractiveness, resources, kindness, intelligence & health in a long-term mate, 45 countries: Each sex tended to report more demanding preferences for attractiveness & resources where the other sex was abundant

Sex differences in human mate preferences vary across sex ratios. Kathryn V. Walter et al. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, Jul 21 2021.

Abstract: A wide range of literature connects sex ratio and mating behaviours in non-human animals. However, research examining sex ratio and human mating is limited in scope. Prior work has examined the relationship between sex ratio and desire for short-term, uncommitted mating as well as outcomes such as marriage and divorce rates. Less empirical attention has been directed towards the relationship between sex ratio and mate preferences, despite the importance of mate preferences in the human mating literature. To address this gap, we examined sex ratio's relationship to the variation in preferences for attractiveness, resources, kindness, intelligence and health in a long-term mate across 45 countries (n = 14 487). We predicted that mate preferences would vary according to relative power of choice on the mating market, with increased power derived from having relatively few competitors and numerous potential mates. We found that each sex tended to report more demanding preferences for attractiveness and resources where the opposite sex was abundant, compared to where the opposite sex was scarce. This pattern dovetails with those found for mating strategies in humans and mate preferences across species, highlighting the importance of sex ratio for understanding variation in human mate preferences.

4. Discussion

The consequences of sex ratio skew have long been of interest to scientists of evolution and behaviour, and particularly of interest to those who study mating [18,58]. Additionally, more recent work has examined the complex role of mate scarcity or abundance in patterns of sex differentiated reproductive behaviour, such as mate competition and parental care across species [59]. Despite these important advances, empirical work connecting human mate preferences to sex ratio remains scarce (for review, see [60]). Here, we attempted to address this literature gap with a large, cross-cultural investigation of human mate preferences. Overall, we found that sex differences in mate preferences vary across sex ratios. Where men are numerous, compared to where they are scarce, men tended to have lower absolute preferences for physical attractiveness, whereas women tended to have higher preferences. This inverse relationship also held for relative preferences for both physical attractiveness and good financial prospects. In sum, each sex tended to report more demanding preferences for attractiveness and resources where they had more power of choice on the mating market, compared to where they had less mating market power.

These findings are important for several reasons. First, the pattern whereby the scarcer sex sets more demanding preferences falls parsimoniously in line with patterns found for mating strategies in humans [15,17], and for mating systems, mate competition and mate preferences in non-humans [3,5,6]. While this study is correlational in nature and cannot speak to causality, the pattern of results is what would be expected if preferences for attractiveness and resources were calibrated to mate availability, and thus plastic in response to mating market demand.

Second, as we show that men's and women's preferences vary across sex ratios inversely, the magnitude of average sex differences in preferences also varies. Much research has examined the universality of sex differences in human mate preferences [21,61]. Less research has examined the variation in sex differences across cultures. The fact that sex ratio has the power to predict cross-cultural variation in mate preferences attains special importance as two previously reported sources of variation, pathogen prevalence and gender equality, have recently failed to replicate as predictors of cross-cultural variation in human mate preferences [22,44,62,63].

Third, that sex ratio more clearly predicts variation in relative preferences than in absolute preferences has implications for the measurement and analysis of mate preference variables. While absolute preferences reflect the trait values that people desire in potential mates, they do not as directly indicate how demanding that preference is within a particular environment. For instance, a strong preference for kindness (7 on a 7-point scale) may correspond to an extremely demanding preference in an environment where the average kindness is 4 on the same scale, or a somewhat demanding preference if the average kindness is 6 on the same scale. Given that scarcity on the mating market is hypothesized to afford power to express more stringent demands, measuring preferences in absolute terms might miss out on a critical dimension of variation relevant to sex ratio. Relative preferences, which incorporate information about the distribution of local trait values, may provide a more relevant measure of preferences because they more directly measure how demanding a given preference value is in a participant's local context.

Despite these important findings, the study does have some limitations and leaves open some important questions. First, the relationship between sex ratio and mate preferences was not as robust for some mate preference dimensions: kindness, health and intelligence. One possibility for why the same pattern did not emerge for these preferences is because they are so highly desired, and therefore more invariant. Indeed, the mean preference for kindness across all countries was, on a 7-point scale, M = 6.23, 95% CI [6.21, 6.26], Mdn = 6, for women, and M = 6.12, 95% CI [6.10, 6.15], Mdn = 6, for men. These universal near-ceiling effects leave limited room for variation. Furthermore, kindness, health and intelligence are also qualities considered very important for both men and women, and therefore these preferences may be less likely to shift downward, even when market power is low [21,64]. Future research could examine the relationship between sex ratio and a wider range of mate preferences—crucially, including those that exhibit more variation—to determine the extent of the relationship between mate preferences and sex ratio.

Second, our finding that mate preferences vary according to current sex ratio at birth could be considered somewhat surprising. Theoretically, sex ratio at birth, the number of males born for every 100 females born, does not appear to typify the conceptual variable of interest: the number of mates available to members of each sex. However, sex ratio at birth is moderately correlated with the other measures of sex ratio (r = 0.35, adult sex ratio; r = 0.39, sex ratio 15–49; r = 0.38, sex ratio 15–65; r = 0.16, city sex ratio), so it may be capturing sex ratio variation similar to adult sex ratio measures. Additionally, sex ratio at birth is an important variable to consider because it may be the origin of some skewed adult sex ratios, particularly in countries with an abundance of men. In particular, sex ratio at birth may reflect aspects of gender relations. Though skewed sex ratios can occur because of migration, violence and unbalanced death rates, sex ratio can also vary due to cultural practices such as sex selective abortions based on preferences for sons [65]. Some prior work has hypothesized that in places where women are scarce, women may have less structural power overall, and may be unable to fulfil their mate preferences even when they hold mating market power [18]. Although we did not find evidence consistent with this hypothesis—women's preferences tended to increase (not decrease) as they became scarcer—future work should continue to explore the source of sex ratio at birth's predictive power, including its potential relationship to gender equality.

Relatedly, our data do not speak to how the relationship between sex ratio and mate preferences emerges. One possibility is that the effects of sex ratio reflect evoked culture, and mating psychology reacts facultatively to local sex ratio to calibrate mate preferences. Alternatively, this relationship could reflect transmitted culture if, for example, people with less strict preferences tend to experience greater mating success when their own sex is abundant, and others mimic their preferences via prestige-based learning [66]. These possibilities are each equally consistent with the data we have here. Future research should explore further the particular ontogenetic mechanisms responsible for cross-cultural variation in preferences.

Furthermore, sex ratio measurement is made complicated by the fact that previous research has varied in the way sex ratio is defined. In particular, prior studies vary with respect to the age ranges used to estimate sex ratio, and whether operational sex ratio (only individuals able to reproduce) or adult sex ratio (all individuals considered adults, including elderly), is the key measure of sex ratio. Some of the inconsistent results in the prior literature may be due to researchers' use of only a single measure of sex ratio, which at times may fail to accurately capture the conceptual variable of interest: the availability of potential mates. Here we attempted to address this limitation by operationalizing country-level sex ratio measures in a variety of ways, and including city-level sex ratio and sex ratio at birth. By taking a broad approach to measuring sex ratio, we showed that results tended to remain robust across measures, though there were exceptions. However, a limitation of this broad approach is that it remains unclear what precisely is the best way to measure sex ratio for human mating research—a question future research must explore.

Part of the lack of clarity about how to operationalize sex ratio comes from the lack of clarity about how humans actually track mate availability. Country-level measures, or even city-level measures of sex ratio, may not accurately represent the sex ratios experienced and tracked by individual participants. More precise sex ratio measurements may produce different results than those found here.

Overall, the consequences of sex ratio have been well studied across mating behaviour in the non-human literature, from intrasexual competition, to preferences, to mating system [3,5,6]. The consequences of sex ratio have also been examined in the human literature in areas spanning from violence to financial behaviour or mating strategy [15,67,68]. However, the question of how sex ratio relates to human mate preferences has received limited attention and prior findings have lacked clarity. Here we provided evidence that sex ratio is related to mate preferences across cultures, such that where each sex is scarce, that sex tends to have higher preference demands for attractiveness and resources. These findings further elucidate the nature of human mating psychology, in particular its universal structure and systematic variation.