Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Every individual assessed as highly psychopathic produced approximately $111,000 in annual crime costs

An Economic Analysis of Crime Costs Associated with Psychopathic Personality Disorder and Violence Risk. Dylan T. Gatner et al. Criminal Justice and Behavior, December 13, 2022.

Abstract: Given substantial national crime costs and that psychopathic personality disorder (PPD) is a robust predictor of recidivism, a research gap exists concerning the cost of crime attributable to adults with PPD. The current study employed a bottom-up cost of illness approach to estimate the association between PPD and crime costs among Canadian men incarcerated in the federal correctional system (n = 188). Participants were rated using the Psychopathy Checklist–Revised (PCL-R) and the Historical-Clinical-Risk Management–20 (HCR-20, version 2). Group mean crime costs were highest for participants who scored highly on the PCL-R and were rated high risk on the HCR-20, and higher scores on both measures were associated with prospective costs accrued from violent and nonviolent recidivism. The findings highlight the need to improve the treatment and management of high-risk individuals with prominent psychopathic features, as it has the potential for significant financial savings for criminal justice systems.

Shared fortune leads to in-group bias, while shared misfortune does not

Fortune and identity. Gary Charness, Xin Jiang. Economics Letters, December 14 2022, 110954.

Abstract: While group identity can generate in-group bias, the topic of how activities generate group affiliation is largely unexplored. We experimentally study the effect of shared experience on group affiliation, varying shared experiences by paying subjects differently for the same task. The results show that shared fortune leads to in-group bias, while shared misfortune does not.


Economists have provided evidence that people exhibit an in-group bias in a variety of contexts, including charity (Chen and Li, 2009) and truth-telling (Rong et al., 2016). Many studies have found in-group favoritism even with the minimal-group paradigm, an almost trivial intergroup categorization. However, typically economists have only considered natural-identity categories such as race, gender, ethnic and religion (Hoff and Pandey, 2006, Benjamin et al., 2010). We extend the minimal-group paradigm to an environment where initial monetary reward based one’s induced group identity is based on pure luck.

It is intuitive to think that shared experience would establish a bond among people, potentially encouraging them to help and cooperate with each other. Therefore, matching people with the same experience might lead to a form of in-group bias. However, it is difficult to study the effect of shared experience in the field without confounds. Lab experiments offer a high degree of control and seem a useful tool for studying the effect of shared experiences in a stylized environment.

This study investigates how shared misfortune and fortune shape one’s sense of group affiliation. We assume that shared experiences generate group cohesion. In addition, the literature on prospect theory and loss aversion has provided considerable evidence that negative events have a larger effect on people’s behavior than positive events. Thus, we further expected that unfortunate participants would show more in-group favoritism than the fortunate participants.

The closest cousin to our study is Cassar and Klein (2019), who found that lottery failures favor other lottery failures more than other people, and there was no significant in-group bias among lottery winners. Our results differ from theirs in that shared fortune leads to in-group bias, while shared misfortune does not. The difference may come from the inequality-generation part. Cassar and Klein (2019) informed subjects of their absolute performance in a real-effort task, and the fact that their payoffs are randomly decided. It was not clear how people identified themselves with two pieces of information. The largest contribution of our experiment is that we resolve this concern. In our experiment, participants do the same task, and have the same performance. So, it is quite clear that their payoffs from this task only reflect random luck.

One third of mentally healthy people reported visual hallucinations similar to those experienced in psychosis, such as seeing people, faces or animals

What is the frequency and nature of visual hallucinations in non-clinical participants? Charlotte Aynsworth, Julie Rolinson, Maryam Pervez, Daniel Collerton, Robert Dudley. Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice. December 11 2022.


Objectives: There is a paucity of psychological treatments for visual hallucinations (VH). A key aspect in the psychological treatment of hallucination-related distress is normalisation to explain that these experiences are commonplace and can be non-distressing. In order to normalise VH, it is vital that more is known about VH in non-clinical populations. This study investigated the prevalence, content, context, appraisals, distress, and behavioural reactions to VH in a non-clinical sample.

Design: A cross-sectional study was conducted.

Methods: 466 students completed the Multi-Modality Unusual Sensory Experiences Questionnaire-VH subscale with additional contextual follow-up questions.

Results: Of the 466 participants, 395 (84.8%) reported anomalous visual experiences. 176 (37.77%) participants reported VH similar to the content seen in psychosis. Of the overall sample, 17.38% felt their experience met the VH definition. Participants mainly saw figures, when alone and in the evening. Participants endorsed normalising appraisals: 112 out of 176 (78.87%) believed their mind was playing tricks on them and 83 (58.45%) believed they were tired. However, many also believed the VH was a threat to their mental (66, 46.48%) or physical well-being (41, 28.87%). These negative appraisals were associated with distress.

Conclusion: VH are seemingly common in non-clinical populations and are similar in a number of ways to those of people with psychosis. Awareness that VH occur on a continuum could normalise people's experiences and reduce their negative appraisals and related distress.