Triadic intergroup relations: Studying situations with an observer, an actor, and a recipient of behavior

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The question of how onlookers/observers make sense of acts they witness between an actor and a recipient/target of the action, and how the group memberships of the three entities inform outcomes, is of clear relevance to intergroup research on contact, collective action, and beyond. However, most intergroup research to date has focused on dyadic relationships rather than triadic relationships with an observer, an actor, and a recipient of behaviour. Maybe because of the dominance of the dyadic approach, the design implications of focusing on triadic (rather than dyadic) relationships have not always been fully appreciated, leading to the introduction of confounds. This contribution will refer to some previously published studies to illustrate this, and outline recommendations for the study of triadic intergroup relationships in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-74
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Theoretical Social Psychology
Issue number1
Early online date6 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019

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