Olivier Klein

Université Libre de Bruxelles, Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium

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Publications (70)115.55 Total impact

  • Psychologica Belgica 06/2015; 55(2):57-70. DOI:10.5334/pb.bf · 1.17 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Collective memory theories propose that groups' remembrances of their past depend upon their current social situation. In Belgium, a significant proportion of Dutch speakers share a collective memory of past victimisation by French speakers and fight for an ever-larger autonomy of their region. Yet, as the respective economic, political and social situations of the linguistic regions of Belgium recently evolved with a reversal of fortunes, the current experience of younger Dutch speakers does not fit the traditional memory anymore. We thus predicted that the collective memories of victimhood would decline amongst them, thus bringing changes in intergroup attitudes and political aspirations. Three generations were compared in a survey of 1226 French-speaking and 1457 Dutch-speaking individuals. For both groups, younger generations evidenced less regionalist and more integrative positions than older ones. However, these effects were stronger for Dutch-speaking respondents, and for them, collective memory of victimhood mediated the relation linking age and identification with Belgium, intergroup attitudes and political aspirations. We concluded that the current social context has decisive consequences for collective remembrances, which, in turn, impact intergroup relations and political attitudes and choices.
    European Journal of Social Psychology 05/2015; DOI:10.1002/ejsp.2104 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Past research has shown that the experience of taste can be influenced by a range of external cues, especially when they concern food's quality. The present research examined whether food's ethicality - a cue typically unrelated to quality - can also influence taste. We hypothesised that moral satisfaction with the consumption of ethical food would positively influence taste expectations, which in turn will enhance the actual taste experience. This enhanced taste experience was further hypothesised to act as a possible reward mechanism reinforcing the purchase of ethical food. The resulting ethical food-> moral satisfaction-> enhanced taste expectations and experience-> stronger intentions to buy/willingness to pay model was validated across four studies: one large scale international survey (Study 1) and three experimental studies involving actual food consumption of different type of ethical origin - organic (Study 2), fair trade (Study 3a) and locally produced (Study 3b). Furthermore, endorsement of values relevant to the food's ethical origin moderated the effect of food's origin on moral satisfaction, suggesting that the model is primarily supported for people who endorse these values. [174 words]. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    Appetite 04/2015; 91. DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2015.04.006 · 2.69 Impact Factor
  • Sandy Schumann, Olivier Klein
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    ABSTRACT: Anecdotes of past social movements suggest that Internet-enabled technologies, especially social media platforms, can facilitate collective actions. Recently, however, it has been argued that the participatory Internet encourages low-cost and low-risk activism—slacktivism—which may have detrimental consequences for groups that aim to achieve a collective purpose. More precisely, low-threshold digital practices such as signing online petitions or “liking” the Facebook page of a group are thought to derail subsequent engagement offline. We assessed this postulation in three experiments (N = 76, N = 59, and N = 48) and showed that so-called slacktivist actions indeed reduce the willingness to join a panel discussion and demonstration as well as the likelihood to sign a petition. This demobilizing effect was mediated by the satisfaction of group-enhancing motives; members considered low-threshold online collective actions as a substantial contribution to the group’s success. The findings highlight that behavior that is belittled as slacktivism addresses needs that pertain to individuals’ sense of group membership. Rather than hedonistic motives or personal interests, concerns for the ingroup’s welfare and viability influenced the decision to join future collective actions offline.
    European Journal of Social Psychology 04/2015; 45(3). DOI:10.1002/ejsp.2084 · 1.78 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: By tuning messages about ambiguous information to their audience’s attitude, communicators can reduce uncertainty and form audience-congruent memories. This effect has been conceptualized as the creation of shared reality with the audience. We applied this approach to representations of ambiguous antecedents of sexual harassment and examined whether the effect depends on the event’s perceived ambiguity. Participants read a testimony about a supervisor’s ambiguous behaviors toward a female employee and described the behaviors to an audience who had previously evaluated him positively or negatively. We manipulated perceived ambiguity of the testimony by including or omitting information about eventual, clear-cut harassment (known vs. unknown outcome). As predicted, participants aligned their messages and memory with their audience’s evaluation only in the unknown-outcome condition, where epistemic uncertainty was higher. The findings highlight the role of epistemic needs in the communicative creation of a shared reality about a ubiquitous social situation with potentially harmful outcomes.
    03/2015; 4. DOI:10.1016/j.jarmac.2014.07.007
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    ABSTRACT: Emergent properties of global political culture were examined using data from the World History Survey (WHS) involving 6,902 university students in 37 countries evaluating 40 figures from world history. Multidimensional scaling and factor analysis techniques found only limited forms of universality in evaluations across Western, Catholic/Orthodox, Muslim, and Asian country clusters. The highest consensus across cultures involved scientific innovators, with Einstein having the most positive evaluation overall. Peaceful humanitarians like Mother Theresa and Gandhi followed. There was much less cross-cultural consistency in the evaluation of negative figures, led by Hitler, Osama bin Laden, and Saddam Hussein. After more traditional empirical methods (e.g., factor analysis) failed to identify meaningful cross-cultural patterns, Latent Profile Analysis (LPA) was used to identify four global representational profiles: Secular and Religious Idealists were overwhelmingly prevalent in Christian countries, and Political Realists were common in Muslim and Asian countries. We discuss possible consequences and interpretations of these different representational profiles.
    PLoS ONE 02/2015; 10(2):e0115641. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0115641 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A blossoming body of research documents the effect of sexual objectification on social perception, but little is known about the consequences of sexual objectification. This paper examines how sexual objectification influences men and women’s rape perceptions in case of a stranger rape. We hypothesized that victims’ sexual objectification might diminish rapist blame and increase victim blame in cases of stranger rape. Fifty-eight male and 57 female Belgian undergraduate students were assigned to either a sexual objectifying (i.e., body focus) or to a personalized portrayal (i.e., face focus) of a rape victim. After reading a newspaper report depicting a stranger rape, participants were asked to evaluate the extent to which they blamed the rapist and the victim. As predicted, participants blamed the rapist less in the sexual objectification condition, regardless of participant gender. In contrast, sexual objectification did not increase victim blame. These results have implications for the well-being of rape victims, as well as for the functioning of justice if it leads authorities to show leniency towards the length of penalty a rapist may receive. The implications of these findings for future research on sexual objectification and gender differences in rape perception are also discussed.
    Sex Roles 01/2015; DOI:10.1007/s11199-015-0482-0 · 1.47 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Past research has shown that the experience of taste can be influenced by a range of external cues, especially when they concern food’s quality. The present research examined whether food’s ethicality – a cue typically unrelated to quality – can also influence taste. We hypothesised that moral satisfaction with the consumption of ethical food would positively influence taste expectations, which in turn will enhance the actual taste experience. This enhanced taste experience was further hypothesised to act as a possible reward mechanism reinforcing the purchase of ethical food. The resulting ethical food-> moral satisfaction-> enhanced taste expectations and experience-> stronger intentions to buy/willingness to pay model was validated across four studies: one large scale international survey (Study 1) and three experimental studies involving actual food consumption of different type of ethical origin - organic (Study 2), fair trade (Study 3a) and locally produced (Study 3b). Furthermore, endorsement of values relevant to the food’s ethical origin moderated the effect of food’s origin on moral satisfaction, suggesting that the model is primarily supported for people who endorse these values.
    Appetite 01/2015; · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Social representations of the historical past, anchored in historical experience and cultural values, play a motivational role for justifying collective behaviour. The First and Second World Wars (WWI and WWII) are the most remembered historical events around the world. The aim of the current study is to investigate, based on country-level data, the relationship between the country's role during the war, social development, cultural values and willingness to fight in a future war, and how social representations of WWII mediate these processes. The data from the World History Survey were collected from a total of 6628 university students from 36 countries. The results showed that ascribing WWII a progressive (UN creation, democracy) or technological-scientific explanation, but also perceiving WWII as a social catastrophe, prevailed more than beliefs justifying WWII (just and necessary war). Directly or indirectly victorious nations endorse legitimizing and positive representations of world wars more than defeated ones. The effects of hierarchical and collectivistic values and low social development on willingness to fight in a war are mediated by legitimizing social representations of WWII. Importantly, when controlled for socio-structural differences (human development index), the indirect effect of being a victorious nation in a war on willingness to fight through legitimizing representations of WWII was also significant. These findings suggest that social representations of WWII serve as anchors for determining the role of a nation in collective violence. Social representations legitimizing past collective violence seem to facilitate more positive attitudes towards potential future collective violence in victorious nations.
    International Journal of Intercultural Relations 11/2014; 43. DOI:10.1016/j.ijintrel.2014.08.013 · 1.14 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: People consistently over-eat when served a large compared to a small (appropriate) portion of food. However, the mechanism underlying this so-called portion size effect is not well understood. We argue that the process of anchoring and adjustment naturally describes this effect, such that the size of a presented portion works as an anchor that strongly influences consumption. The classical anchoring and adjustment paradigm was applied to six hypothetical eating situations. Participants were asked to imagine being served either a small or a large portion of food (i.e., low and high anchor) and to indicate whether they would consume more or less than this amount. Then, they indicated how much they would eat. These estimates were compared to a no-anchor condition where participants did not imagine a specific portion size but only indicated how much they would eat. In addition, half of participants in the anchoring conditions received a discounting instruction stating that the portion size they had been asked to imagine was randomly selected and thus not informative for their consumption estimate. As expected, participants who imagined to be served larger portions estimated to consume significantly more food than participants in the no-anchor condition, and participants who imagined to be served smaller portions estimated to consume significantly less food than participants in the no-anchor condition. The discounting manipulation did not reduce this effect of the anchors. We suggest that the process of anchoring and adjustment may provide a useful framework to understand the portion size effect and we discuss implications of this perspective.
    Appetite 06/2014; 81. DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2014.06.018 · 2.69 Impact Factor
  • Social Cognition 06/2014; 32(Supplement):12-32. DOI:10.1521/soco.2014.32.supp.12 · 1.64 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The unconscious-thought effect occurs when distraction improves complex decision making. Recent studies suggest that this effect is more likely to occur with low- than high-demanding distraction tasks. We discuss implications of these findings for Newell & Shanks' (N&S's) claim that evidence is lacking for the intervention of unconscious processes in complex decision making.
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 01/2014; 37(1):44-45. DOI:10.1017/S0140525X13000897 · 14.96 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In the 1960s, a historical event occurred at one of Europe's most prestigious universities: The Dutch-speaking students forced the French-speaking students to relocate and establish their own university. We compared the extent to which members of each social group developed elaborate memories of the events surrounding the conflict and whether they were associated with differences in rehearsal type (media, conversational, rumination) and initiating conditions (importance, political engagement, and negative/positive emotions). All participants were university students at the time of the conflict. We found that Dutch-speakers exhibited more elaborate memories compared to French-speakers and that importance was associated with elaborate memories only for the Dutch-speakers. However, positive emotions appear to be critical in the formation of elaborate memories across the social groups. We found no such associations for negative emotions. We discuss these results in terms of the social/cognitive processes transcending social group membership in understanding how individuals remember past conflicts.
    09/2013; 2(3):166–172. DOI:10.1016/j.jarmac.2013.07.003
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    ABSTRACT: A survey revealed that researchers still seem to encounter difficulties to cope with outliers. Detecting outliers by determining an interval spanning over the mean plus/minus three standard deviations remains a common practice. However, since both the mean and the standard deviation are particularly sensitive to outliers, this method is problematic. We highlight the disadvantages of this method and present the median absolute deviation, an alternative and more robust measure of dispersion that is easy to implement. We also explain the procedures for calculating this indicator in SPSS and R software.
    Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 07/2013; 49(4):764–766. DOI:10.1016/j.jesp.2013.03.013 · 2.22 Impact Factor
  • Psychological Science 04/2013; DOI:10.1177/0956797612474672 · 4.43 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objectification and dehumanization represent motivational conundrums because they are phenomena in which people are seen in ways that are fundamentally inaccurate; seeing people as objects, as animals, or not as people. The purpose of the 60th Nebraska Symposium on Motivation was to examine the motivational underpinnings of objectification and dehumanization of the self and others. To provide an overall context for this volume, we first provide classic conceptualizations of objectification and dehumanization and speculate about relations between the two. We then introduce a unified theory of objectification and dehumanization within the global versus local processing model (GLOMO) and provide initial supporting evidence. Finally, we introduce the chapters in this volume, which provide additional significant and novel motivational perspectives on objectification and dehumanization.
    Nebraska Symposium on Motivation. Nebraska Symposium on Motivation 01/2013; 60:1-23. · 1.17 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This article revisits two classical issues in experimental methodology: experimenter bias and demand characteristics. We report a content analysis of the method section of experiments reported in two psychology journals (Psychological Science and the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology), focusing on aspects of the procedure associated with these two phenomena, such as mention of the presence of the experimenter, suspicion probing, and handling of deception. We note that such information is very often absent, which prevents observers from gauging the extent to which such factors influence the results. We consider the reasons that may explain this omission, including the automatization of psychology experiments, the evolution of research topics, and, most important, a view of research participants as passive receptacles of stimuli. Using a situated social cognition perspective, we emphasize the importance of integrating the social context of experiments in the explanation of psychological phenomena. We illustrate this argument via a controversy on stereotype-based behavioral priming effects.
    Perspectives on Psychological Science 11/2012; 7(6):572–584. DOI:10.1177/1745691612463704 · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    Appetite 10/2012; 59(2):616. DOI:10.1016/j.appet.2012.05.004 · 2.69 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In line with Allport's contact hypothesis, previous research showed that direct intergroup contact can reduce prejudices. However, establishing face-to-face contact is not always feasible. We postulate that Facebook-groups are a setting where direct and observed intergroup contact can develop, reducing prejudices and increasing mutual acceptance. Analyzing the comments of nine Facebook-groups with the destructive and constructive conflict scale, our results indicated that the expression of prejudices decreased and that of mutual acceptance increased over time, both for in- and outgroup members of the Facebook-groups. Only the expression of less prejudices, but not that of more mutual acceptance was predicted by intergroup contact. The influence of group-based motivations on the engagement in intergroup contact is discussed, and the overall findings are integrated in Steele and Brown's process model of media practices.
    Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking 07/2012; 15(8):411-6. DOI:10.1089/cyber.2011.0569 · 2.18 Impact Factor
  • Sandy Schumann, Olivier Klein, Karen Douglas
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    ABSTRACT: This study examines how Internet use can empower users to carry out collective actions for an environmentalism movement organization. More precisely, we focused on the impact of online interactivity, i.e., the fact that users can share content online and receive feedback on it from others. The participatory Internet fulfills thereby two preconditions of a sense of psychological empowerment: a) receiving information about the goals and performance of an organization and b) experiencing an effective reward system. Using an experimental design, our results showed that users' sense of empowerment was indeed increased by online interactivity. Higher sense of empowerment led to stronger willingness to participate in a panel discussion and demonstration for the environmentalist organization. In addition, when users were identifiable with their name and photo as compared to being anonymous while making their contributions, the likelihood to get engaged was higher, mediated by an increased sense of empowerment. The importance of intra-individual processes when studying the impact of Internet use on behavior is discussed, as well as the role of identifiability online.
    Proceedings of the 7th international conference on Persuasive Technology: design for health and safety; 06/2012

Publication Stats

617 Citations
115.55 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2001–2015
    • Université Libre de Bruxelles
      • • Research Centre of Social and Intercultural Psychology (CRPSI)
      • • Unit of Social Ecology (USE)
      • • Consciousness, Cognition & Computation Group
      • • Research Centre of Cognition and Neurosciences (CRNC)
      • • Service de Psychologie & Psychothérapie
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 2012–2014
    • University Hospital Brussels
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital, Belgium
  • 2000–2012
    • Vrije Universiteit Brussel
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium
  • 2005
    • University of Grenoble
      Grenoble, Rhône-Alpes, France
  • 2003–2004
    • Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (FNRS)
      Bruxelles, Brussels Capital Region, Belgium