Adam R. Pearson

Adam R. Pearson
Pomona College · Department of Psychological Science

Ph.D.

About

55
Publications
50,263
Reads
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1,884
Citations
Additional affiliations
January 2017 - present
Pomona College
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
August 2014 - August 2015
Princeton University
Position
  • Visiting Fellow
July 2011 - present
Pomona College
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
Education
August 2007 - August 2011
Yale University
Field of study
  • Psychology
August 2004 - August 2007
University of Connecticut
Field of study
  • Psychology
August 1999 - May 2003
Cornell University
Field of study
  • Biological Sciences

Publications

Publications (55)
Article
Full-text available
The recent Paris Agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions, adopted by 195 nations at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference, signaled unprecedented commitment by world leaders to address the human social aspects of climate change. Indeed, climate change increasingly is recognized by scientists and policymakers as a social issue requir...
Article
Full-text available
Climate change is often conceived as a technical challenge, requiring smart policies and science-driven solutions. Yet, as revealed by each new round of international negotiations, and by growing (rather than receding) partisan divides on climate change in the United States, climate change is also profoundly social: How people understand and engage...
Article
In a nationally representative survey experiment, diverse segments of the US public underestimated the environmental concerns of nonwhite and low-income Americans and misperceived them as lower than those of white and more affluent Americans. Moreover, both whites and nonwhites and higher- and lower-income respondents associated the term “environme...
Article
Climate change is increasingly understood as a social justice issue by academics, policymakers, and the public, however, the nature of these perceptions, and their implications for cooperation and decision making, have only recently begun to receive empirical attention. We review emerging empirical work that suggests that morality and justice perce...
Article
Research has identified familism, a cultural value reflecting the centrality and prioritization of the family, as a key psychosocial determinant of health risk-mitigation behavior among Latinos, a large and growing segment of the US public. In a national probability survey in which Latinos were oversampled, we explored whether familism predicts cli...
Article
Full-text available
Racial and ethnic minority and lower-income groups are disproportionately affected by environmental hazards and suffer worse health outcomes than other groups in the United States. Relative to whites and higher-income groups, racial-ethnic minority and lower-income Americans also frequently express greater concern about high-profile global environm...
Article
National polls reveal stark and growing political divisions on the issue of climate change within the United States. However, few studies have explored whether these trends generalize to communities of color, who experience disproportionate environmental risks. Synthesizing over a decade of nationally representative survey data (2008–2019; N = 23,7...
Article
Media coverage of climate protests within the United States and internationally has shown growing public frustration about governmental responses to climate change. But what are the effects of conveying that people are angry? And how do they contrast with more traditional norm messages about climate policy support? Here, we investigate whether soci...
Article
People are exposed to repeated features of their environment that, over time, give rise to stable individual differences in attitudes, motivations, and behaviors that can arise and manifest outside of conscious awareness, and without conscious intent or control. Priming techniques have been been developed to study these individual differences. Thre...
Article
Full-text available
Global climate change is the largest existential threat of our time. Glaciers are retreating, sea levels are rising, extreme weather is intensifying and the last four years have been the hottest on record (NASA, 2020; World Meteorological Organization, 2020). Although climate change is already significantly impacting natural and human systems aroun...
Article
Full-text available
This article describes the qualitative approach used to generate and interpret the quantitative study reported by Song and colleagues’ (2020) in their article, “What counts as an ‘environmental’ issue? Differences in environmental issue conceptualization across race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.” Song and colleagues (2020) describe the resu...
Preprint
This article describes the qualitative approach used to generate and interpret the quantitative study reported by Song and colleagues’ (2020) in their article, “What counts as an ‘environmental’ issue? Differences in environmental issue conceptualization across race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.” Song and colleagues (2020) describe the resu...
Article
Racial/ethnic minorities and lower-socioeconomic (SES) groups in the U.S. face disproportionate environmental risks, which may hold implications for how these groups construe environmental issues, relative to other segments of the public. We explored this possibility with a diverse sample of 1191 U.S. adults, hypothesizing that, relative to White a...
Article
Previous research documents that U.S. conservatives, and conservative white males in particular, tend to dismiss the threat of climate change more than others in the U.S. public. Other research indicates that higher education and income can each exacerbate the dismissive tendencies of the political Right. Bridging these lines of research, the prese...
Preprint
Full-text available
This paper is a pre-print and is not the copy of record and may not exactly replicate the authoritative document published. Please do not copy or cite this document without permission. The published article is available at 10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2019.102024
Technical Report
Full-text available
How behavioral scientists, engineers, and architects can work together to advance how we all understand and practice design-in order to enhance sustainability in the built environment, and beyond.
Chapter
Full-text available
Environmental sustainability, the long-term management and protection of earth’s resources and ecosystems, is increasingly recognized as a societal challenge shaped by human behavior at every level of social interaction, from neighborhoods to nations. Psychological perspectives on conservation, which have traditionally emphasized individual determi...
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter considers the role of one form of contemporary bias, aversive racism, in the expression of racial microaggressions. It explains the origin and dynamics of aversive racism, discussing the role of implicit racial bias in both subtle and blatant forms of discrimination. The chapter shows how aversive racism among White Americans can affec...
Article
Full-text available
Perceiving greater threat from climate change has been shown to positively affect beliefs about humanity’s ability to mitigate the threat. We examined two possible mediators of this paradoxical relationship utilizing data from a large socioeconomically diverse sample of the US adults (n = 1040) collected in 2015. Specifically, we predicted that att...
Article
Full-text available
Pepper & Nettle overstate cross-domain evidence of present-oriented thinking among lower-socioeconomic-status (SES) groups and overlook key social and contextual drivers of temporal decision making. We consider psychological research on climate change – a quintessential intertemporal problem that implicates inequities and extrinsic mortality risk –...
Article
Full-text available
Interest in the audience factors that shape the processing of climate change messaging has risen over the past decade, as evidenced by dozens of studies demonstrating message effects that are contingent on audiences’ political values, ideological worldviews, and cultural mindsets. Complementing these efforts is a growing interest in understanding t...
Article
Full-text available
In his recent encyclical letter Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home, Pope Francis issued a moral appeal to the global community for swift action on climate change. However, social science research suggests a complex relationship between religious concepts and environmental attitudes, raising the question of what influence the pope’s position m...
Article
Full-text available
Research suggests that public divides on climate change may often be rooted in identity processes, driven in part by a motivation to associate with others with similar political and ideological views. In a large split-ballot national survey experiment of 2041 U.S. adults, we explored the role of a non-partisan identity—racial/ethnic majority and mi...
Chapter
In the United States, the 1960s and early 1970s were characterized by significant societal changes. The Civil Rights Movement and social, political, and moral forces stimulated these changes to address racism by White Americans toward Black Americans and achieve the nation's historical egalitarian ideals. With the Civil Rights legislation and other...
Article
This article discusses how seemingly well-intended policies and interventions to reduce intergroup bias by emphasizing colorblindness through overarching commonalities between groups may, either unintentionally or strategically, inhibit efforts to address group-based inequities. First, we discuss the roots of bias in social categorization process,...
Research
Full-text available
Dovidio, J. F., Gaertner, S. L., Ufkes, E. G., Saguy, T., & Pearson, A. R. (in press). Included but invisible? Subtle bias, common identity, and the darker side of “we”. Social Issues and Policy Review.
Article
Full-text available
Social divides on climate change are often attributed to political factors, but new psychological research points to a wide range of group influences beyond politics that shape public opinion on climate change. We highlight two commonly overlooked sources of influence that represent key underutilized leverage points for public outreach: (1) the rol...
Article
This experiment explored consequences of two common lay theories about the diet-disease link: nutrient-centrism, the belief that nutrients (e.g. potassium) are crucial to staving off disease, and whole-food centrism, the belief that whole foods (e.g. bananas), containing these nutrients in their natural context, are most beneficial. Depicting an in...
Article
Full-text available
The climate movement is failing to engage a diverse set of stakeholders in efforts to address climate change, and a lack of diversity within the climate community itself may be, in part, to blame. Research-informed solutions are urgently needed to address the problem and help build a more inclusive and influential movement.
Article
Intergroup interactions are often anxiety provoking, and this can lead members of both majority and minority groups to avoid contact. Whereas negative consequences of experiencing intergroup anxiety are well documented, the role of perceived anxiety has received substantially less theoretical and empirical attention. We demonstrate in 3 experiments...
Article
Full-text available
The present longitudinal study examined the complex role of race-including racial attitudes and visual representations of race-in White Americans' responses to Obama during the 2008 U.S. presidential election. Consistent with prior research, participants who perceived Obama as darker skinned were less likely to vote for him and generally evaluated...
Article
Full-text available
Previous research suggests that the perception of anxiety in intergroup interactions can be detrimental to relationship formation. However, the underlying processes through which this occurs remain unclear. The present longitudinal study, which studied same-and different-race/ethnicity roommates over 6 weeks, investigated whether perceived partner...
Article
Full-text available
The present research examined whether mismatches in implicit racial attitudes and regulatory goals may contribute to well-documented cognitive depletion effects after interracial interactions. Consistent with a mismatch account of regulatory demands, both high and low implicitly-biased Whites showed evidence of cognitive depletion after interacting...
Article
Full-text available
Empathy has received increasing empirical attention in the study of intergroup relations. Much of this research has focused on the potential of interventions that generate empathy for improving intergroup attitudes and reducing intergroup bias. Specifically, this work typically explores how empathy mediates the effects of various manipulations, suc...
Article
A common ingroup identity promotes positive attitudes and behavior toward members of outgroups, but the durability of these effects and generalizability to relationships outside of the laboratory have been questioned. The present research examined how initial perceptions of common ingroup identity among randomly assigned college roommates provide a...
Article
Authors’ IntroductionIntergroup bias is one of the most actively researched topics in the field of social psychology. Hundreds of books and thousands of research articles have addressed this issue over more than half a century. Although the psychological roots of blatant prejudices are well documented, the development of more subtle and often unint...
Article
Full-text available
Within the United States, declines in the overt expression of racial prejudice over several decades have given way to near universal endorsement of the principles of racial equality as a core cultural value. Yet, evidence of persistent and substantial disparities between Blacks and Whites remain. Here, we review research that demonstrates how the a...
Article
Intergroup interactions between racial or ethnic majority and minority groups are often stressful for members of both groups; however, the dynamic processes that promote or alleviate tension in intergroup interaction remain poorly understood. Here we identify a behavioral mechanism-response delay-that can uniquely contribute to anxiety and promote...
Article
Full-text available
We introduce a new experimental method for studying power. Drawing from multiple theoretical perspectives, we conceptualize power as relational and structural, as well as comprised of different forms through which basic human needs can be met. Thus, the method we introduce examines how, when faced with a particular need, people use multiple forms o...
Article
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In this paper, we assess what neuroscience theory and method have contributed to the study of group processes and intergroup relations and what we see as potential future contributions to the discipline. We briefly review the historical relation between neuroscience and social psychology, identify issues that may limit the value of neuroscience to...
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter examines the potential roles of intergroup representations, threat, and trust in the dynamics of intergroup relations between Whites and Blacks. It first explores the psychological processes that promote intergroup bias, threat, and distrust and may lead to intergroup conflict. Second, it examines ways of reducing intergroup bias. Thir...
Chapter
Full-text available
Other chapters in this volume describe the fragile nature of intergroup relations and illustrate vividly, with examples from Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia, and from the Holocaust during World War II, how neighbors who had been living in apparent harmony can suddenly become violent enemies. These chapters describe conditions such as political instab...
Article
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Nowadays, there is an increasing demand for the military to conduct operations that are beyond traditional warfare. In these operations, analyzing and understanding those who are involved in the situation, how they are going to behave, and why they behave in certain ways is critical for success. The challenge lies in that behavior does not simply f...
Article
Tetlock is a foxes' fox; his major finding is that foxes outperform hedgehogs; he could not wish for a happier outcome. Nonetheless he devotes a whole chapter to identifying conditions under which hedgehogs outperform foxes. This is the scientific integrity Feynman spoke for. A final point. The book is self-contradictory. Its documentation of the i...
Article
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The present study examined the multidimensional nature of intergroup hate and the potential roles of hate and prejudice in expressions of White Americans' treatment of Blacks within the context of the U.S. legal system. White participants in the U.S. read about a provoked or unprovoked violent assault perpetrated by a Black assailant on a White vic...
Article
Eusocial organisms are characterized by cooperative brood care, generation overlap and reproductive division of labour. Traits associated with eusociality are most developed in ants, termites, paper wasps and corbiculate bees; the fossil record indicates that each of these advanced eusocial taxa evolved in the Late Cretaceous or earlier (greater th...
Article
Full-text available
Research using the Implicit Association Test (IAT) has consistently shown that White participants demonstrate an implicit preference for White, race-related stimuli over similar Black stimuli. Scholars in many domains have also documented that people generally have more positive associations with the color white and more negative associations with...
Article
Full-text available
In this chapter, we consider the fundamental importance of social identity both in terms of how people think about others and for personal well-being. The chapter reviews how social categorization and social identity impact people's responses to others and, drawing on our own work on the Common Ingroup Identity Model, examines how identity processe...
Chapter
Full-text available
Racial biases are a fundamental form of social control that support the economic, political, and personal goals of the majority group. Because of their functionality, racial biases are deeply embedded in cultural values, such as in widely accepted ideologies that justify inequality and exploitation and institutional policies and practices). Althoug...
Article
Full-text available
The present work investigated mechanisms by which Whites' prejudice toward Blacks can be reduced (Study 1) and explored how creating a common ingroup identity can reduce prejudice by promoting these processes (Study 2). In Study 1, White participants who viewed a videotape depicting examples of racial discrimination and who imagined the victim's fe...
Article
We analyzed the higher level phylogeny of the bee family Halictidae based on the coding regions of three single-copy nuclear genes (long-wavelength [LW] opsin, wingless, and elongation factor 1-alpha [EF-1 alpha]). Our combined data set consisted of 2,234 aligned nucleotide sites (702 base pairs [bp] for LW opsin, 405 bp for wingless, and 1,127 bp...

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