Abraham P Buunk

University of Groningen, Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands

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Publications (131)223.88 Total impact

  • Karlijn Massar · Abraham P. Buunk
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigated sex differences in jealousy after subliminal exposure to rivals wearing high-status or low-status clothes. It was expected that individual differences in preventive jealousy would moderate the relationship between a rival’s characteristics and jealousy. Participants (Men n = 54, age M = 21.61, SD = 3.47; n = 71 women, age M = 20.72, SD = 1.86) completed a parafoveal subliminal priming paradigm as well as questionnaires about jealousy and preventive jealousy. As predicted, women were not affected by their rival’s status, but women high in preventive jealousy reported more jealousy than women low in preventive jealousy. However, whereas men low in preventive jealousy reported equal amounts of jealousy after exposure to a high-status and a low-status rival, surprisingly, and contrary to the expectations, men high in preventive jealousy reported most jealousy after exposure to a low-status rival. To explain these unexpected results, threats to self-esteem were discussed.
    No preview · Article · May 2016 · Psychological Reports
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    ABSTRACT: In the present study in secondary schools and hospitals in Uruguay (N = 187), we examined the relationship between feeling the victim of mobbing and a perceived loss of status. Nearly all forms of mobbing were more prevalent among hospital employees than among school employees. Among hospital employees, 40.4%, and among school employees, 23.9% reported being the victim of mobbing at least once a week. Being the victim of mobbing was, in both hospitals and schools, more prevalent among older employees, and in hospitals, among employees who were more highly educated and who had been employed for a longer time. Men and women did not differ in reporting that one was a victim of mobbing, but men reported more perceived loss of status than women. However, among women, being the victim of mobbing was much more strongly related to experiencing a loss of status than among men. Several explanations for this gender difference and the practical and theoretical implications of the results are discussed.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Journal of Interpersonal Violence
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    ABSTRACT: We hypothesized that teenage girls from the Caribbean island of Curaçao who grew up without a father would be more intrasexually competitive than teenage girls who grew up with a father, and would therefore more often use non-verbal seduction strategies to attract males. A pilot study showed a high inter-observer reliability for the observation of non-verbal seduction strategies. In study 1, among 105 teenage girls with a mean age of 16.29. years, reliable scales were developed reflecting various non-verbal seduction strategies. Study 2 was conducted among 123 teenage girls with a mean age of 18.73. years. Compared to girls who grew up with their father, girls who grew up without their father before the age of fourteen reported overall more intrasexual competitiveness and more non-verbal seduction strategies, including direct flirtation, peacock behavior, the use of hairstyles with waves, the use of facial make-up, the use of conspicuous nail-care, and active and restless behavior in the presence of males. Intrasexual competitiveness was associated with most strategies, and was a significant mediator between father absence and the expression of most non-verbal seduction strategies. From a life-history perspective, we discuss possible explanations for, and implications of, these findings.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2015 · Evolution and Human Behavior
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    ABSTRACT: Life satisfaction among young offenders may be affected by the subjective experience of their social status and by the feeling of being a 'loser' compared with others, but it is not clear what variables affect such experiences in this group. To examine relationships of type of sentence (prison or probation) and of gender with subjective social status, sense of defeat and life satisfaction among young offenders. One hundred and five participants were randomly selected from a cohort of young offenders, stratifying for sentence type and for gender. They were interviewed by trained and experienced interviewers. Young people in a correctional facility experienced lower life satisfaction and greater sense of defeat than those on probation. Independently of judicial measure, low life satisfaction was correlated with sense of defeat among young men but not young women, whereas among young women, but not young men, low life satisfaction was associated with low subjective status. Our findings of a correlation between sentence type and life satisfaction needs new, longitudinal research to determine the direction of this relationship. Whether low life satisfaction is predictive of a custodial disposal for young offenders or such a sentence lowers life satisfaction, those trying to supervise or help these young people may need to take account of it. Further, our findings suggest that young male and young female offenders should perhaps be treated in different ways to improve their sense of satisfaction with life, which may, in turn, reduce their risk of reoffending. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2015 · Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health
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    Abraham P. Buunk
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    ABSTRACT: This study examined the opposition against out-group mating and the attitude towards parental influence on mate choice among 107 Dutch, 69 Moroccan, and 69 Turkish participants aged between 15 and 25. The level of preferred parental influence on mate choice was considerably higher among the Turks and Moroccans than among the Dutch, but females in both ethnic groups were less in favor of parental influence on mate choice than males were. Overall, males showed a higher opposition against interethnic dating than females did, and the Turks showed a higher level of opposition to interethnic mating than both the Moroccans and the Dutch. In addition, the effect of opposition against interethnic mating on preferred parental influence on mate choice was especially pronounced among the Turks, somewhat less so among the Moroccans, and least strong among the Dutch. Especially young males with a Turkish and Moroccan background seem to hold on to the values of the cultures they come from, and particularly Turkish immigrants seem keen on keeping the cohesion of their ethnic group intact by opposing interethnic dating, and by favoring parental influence on mate choice as a way to achieve this goal.
    Preview · Article · Jun 2015
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    Gert Stulp · Abraham P Buunk · Simon Verhulst · Thomas V Pollet
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    ABSTRACT: Across cultures, taller stature is linked to increased social status, but the potential reasons why this should be are unclear. One potential explanation is that taller individuals are more likely to win a dyadic confrontation with a competitor (i.e., they are more dominant), which leads to higher social rank. Although some previous studies have shown that perceptions of status or dominance are related to height, and are therefore consistent with such an explanation, there is surprisingly little research testing whether height actually has any influence on the behavioural outcomes in real-life social interactions. Here, we present three naturalistic observational studies demonstrating that height predicts interpersonal dominance during brief dyadic interactions. Study 1 investigated the likelihood of giving way in a narrow passage (N = 92); Study 2 investigated giving way in a busy shopping street, plus the likelihood of colliding with another individual (N = 1,108); and Study 3 investigated the likelihood of maintaining a linear path while walking, and potentially entering another individual's personal space (N = 1,056). We conclude that human height is positively related to interpersonal dominance, and may well contribute to the widely observed positive association between height and social status.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · PLoS ONE
  • Ashley D. Hoben · Abraham P. Buunk · Maryanne L. Fisher

    No preview · Article · Jan 2015
  • Abraham P. Buunk · Pieternel Dijkstra

    No preview · Article · Jan 2015
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    Abraham P Buunk · Karlijn Massar
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    ABSTRACT: It is argued that, while men may be intrasexually more competitive than women, to attract potential mates, men will, more than women, associate with same-sex friends who are attractive to the opposite sex. Therefore, more than women, men will choose more physically attractive and dominant companions in a mating context than in a neutral context. In Study 1 among 262 participants a mating scenario (going to a party) and a neutral scenario (seeing a movie) were developed, and it was shown that the mating scenario did indeed induce more a mating context than the neutral scenario. In Study 2 among 167 participants the hypotheses were tested by examining the preferences for a companion in both scenarios. The findings from Study 2 supported the predictions. In response to the mating as compared to the neutral scenario, men, but not women, found the attractiveness of a companion more important, preferred a more socially dominant companion, and found the social dominance of a companion more important. Men as well as women preferred in general companions who were less attractive than themselves, but preferred a more attractive companion in a mating than in a neutral context. The effects for social dominance were in general more pronounced among individuals high in sociosexual orientation (SOI). To conclude especially mens’ attitude towards same sex others in a mating context may be driven by the desire to associate, rather than to compete, with same-sex others who are attractive to the opposite sex.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2014 · Anthropological Review
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    Abraham P Buunk · Gert Stulp · Johan Ormel
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    ABSTRACT: A study among 1,881 adolescents (52.3% girls) with a mean age of 19.1 years examined the effects of parental social status upon intrasexual competitiveness. Whereas females were consistently more intrasexually competitive the higher the socio-economic status of their parents, males with parents of the lowest socio-economic status tended to be more intrasexually competitive than those with parents of medium socio-economic status, and nearly as intrasexually competitive as those with parents of high socio-economic status. Only among adolescents with parents of low socio-economic status were males more intrasexually competitive than females. Among males and females, higher levels of intrasexual competitiveness were related to a higher family income, to a higher occupational status of the father as well as of the mother, and to a higher educational level of the mother. Only among females were higher levels of intrasexual competitiveness associated with a higher educational level of the father. Males whose fathers had only elementary education had a relatively high level of intrasexual competitiveness. The results are discussed in the context of the multifaceted nature of human status, and the potential relevance of intrasexual competitiveness for individuals of high versus low social status.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2014 · Evolutionary Psychology
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    Full-text · Dataset · Oct 2014
  • Thecla M Brakel · Arie Dijkstra · Abraham P Buunk
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Objective: Former cancer patients' quality of life can be improved by offering social comparison information (Brakel, Dijkstra, Siero & Buunk, 2012ª). Whether patients, however, benefit from the information may depend on how negative they perceive their present and their future. Design: We conducted a randomized experimental field study with a pre- and post-measurement. Dutch former cancer patients - recruited through different media - were assigned to a social comparison intervention condition or a no-intervention control condition (experimental condition n = 62; control condition n = 88; Mage = 52 years). In the intervention condition patients received a 20-minute computer tailored interview in audio format. Patients' present perceived life threat and future health expectations were measured at pretest. Main Outcome Measures: Quality of life and life satisfaction after 2 months were the outcome variables. Results: The intervention increased life satisfaction only in patients who experienced a high present life threat (ηp(2) = .08) and in patients who had negative future health expectations the intervention increased quality of life (ηp(2) = .05). Conclusions: Not all patients did benefit from the intervention; for some patients the social comparison intervention was even detrimental. Moderator analyses seem necessary to evaluate psycho-social interventions for cancer patients.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2014 · Psychology & Health
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    Abraham P. Buunk · Pieternel Dijkstra

    Preview · Article · Jan 2014 · Psychology
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    Karlijn Massar · Abraham P. Buunk · Stefan L.K. Gruijters
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    ABSTRACT: The positive effects of partner support on pregnancy outcomes and maternal (mental) health are well established in the literature. Less is known about pregnant women’s perceptions of their partner and relationship, and whether these differ from those of nonpregnant women. Therefore, in the current study, data were collected through an online questionnaire among pregnant (n = 66) and nonpregnant (n = 59) women with similar demographic profiles. The results show that pregnant women reported feeling significantly more happy with both their partner and their relationship than nonpregnant women. Importantly, we did not find any differences in self-esteem or mate value between groups. Although the present study is mainly exploratory, we suggest that pregnant women may show a positive bias in the way they view their partner and their relationship, which in turn may be beneficial to her own as well as her child’s mental and physical health.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to test whether men perceive changes in their female partner's attractive-ness as a function of her fertility status. We further tested how both male and female self-perception varies in relation to female fertility status. This study benefits from the use of transvaginal ultrasonogra-phy to detect fertility during the regular cycle and the use of a within-subjects design in which romantic couples were followed both across the cycle and during hormonal contraceptive use. We find that men rated their female partner as more attractive near to ovulation (when fertile) as compared to during the luteal cycle phase or during hormonal contraceptive use. Moreover, our results point to a presently unrec-ognized negative consequence of hormonal contraceptive use on male self-perception, with men rating themselves lower in attractiveness when their partner was using hormonal contraceptives than when she was regularly cycling. In contrast, there was no difference across measures in female self-reported attractiveness. Results are discussed in terms of their potential impact on within-couple social dynamics. © 2013 Published by Elsevier B.V.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · Biological Psychology
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    ABSTRACT: In human societies, parents often have a strong influence on the mate choice of their offspring. Moreover, empirical studies show that conflict over mate choice between parents and offspring is widespread across human cultures. Here we provide the first theoretical investigation into this conflict, showing that it may result from an underlying evolutionary conflict over parental resource distribution. We present a series of evolutionary simulations in which we gradually expand a standard model of sexual selection by the stepwise addition of elements of parental involvement. In our model, females obtain resources enhancing their fecundity from both their chosen mate and their parents. Potential mates differ in their ability to provide resources and may signal this ability. Both females and their parents can develop a preference for the signal, with both preferences influencing the realized mate choice of the female. Parents may differentially allocate resources among their daughters depending on the resource-provisioning abilities of their sons-in-law. When fecundity returns on investment are diminishing, we find that parents invest most in daughters whose mates provide few resources. Subsequently, the daughters evolve to exploit this allocation rule through their mate choice, which is not in the parents' best interests. This results in a conflict over mate choice between parents and their offspring, manifested as an on-going divergence of offspring and parental preferences. We predict that the conflict should be most pronounced when fathers, as opposed to mothers, control resource allocation.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2013 · Evolution and Human Behavior
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    Karlijn Massar · Abraham P. Buunk
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    ABSTRACT: This study investigates whether gender differences in adolescents’ advertising judgments and purchase intentions are due to their level of involvement with the advertised product, and with the claim made in the ad, i.e. whether evaluative versus factual message claims are used. Male (n = 115) and female adolescents (n = 127) were randomly assigned to a mixed design. They read either factual or evaluative ads (between-subjects variable) about a product within and about a product outside their area of interests (within-subjects variable). Results show that when an ad contained a description of a high involvement product (i.e. the youth magazine), adolescent females were persuaded most by factual information, whereas when the ad contained a description of a low involvement product (the sports magazine), they were persuaded more by evaluative information. Adolescent males overall indicated a more positive attitude towards a high involvement product, but were equally persuaded by evaluative and factual information. We conclude that gendered advertising responses do exist, and that the level of involvement with the product advertised determines which type of message claim—factual versus evaluative—is most effective for each gender. Discussion focuses on theoretical and practical implications of these results.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Psychology
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    Kelly D Cobey · Christine Klipping · Abraham P Buunk
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to test the influence of hormonal contraceptive use on levels of female intrasexual competition. Twenty-eight women completed a scale for intrasexual competition on three occasions: when using hormonal contraceptives and when regularly cycling at a fertile and a non-fertile cycle stage. When using hormonal contraception, pair-bonded, but not single women, reported significantly lower levels of intrasexual competition than when regularly cycling at either fertile or non-fertile cycle stages. This effect remained significant when controlling for age, length of relationship and relationship satisfaction. Neither pair-bonded nor single women reported shifts in intrasexual competition across the menstrual cycle when fertile as compared to non-fertile. This study benefited from a within-subjects design and a more rigorous assessment of fertility status (transvaginal ultrasonography) than which is typical in the field. Results are discussed in consideration of the evolutionary literature on the stability of romantic relationships and fitness advantages associated with intrasexual competition.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2013 · Evolution and Human Behavior
  • Shelli L. Dubbs · Abraham P. Buunk · Hirokazu Taniguchi
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    ABSTRACT: Previous research has demonstrated that parents and children often have conflicting mate preferences. The present research was conducted among 443 Japanese university students. Using an existing scale designed to uncover parent-offspring conflict over mate choice, the results revealed that children perceived having a potential partner with traits connoting poor genetic quality as being more unacceptable to themselves, and having a potential partner with traits connoting low parental investment and cooperation with the ingroup as being more unacceptable to their parent. A number of sex differences emerged. The highest potential for parent-offspring conflict existed between female offspring and their father, and female offspring also rated traits connoting low social status as being more unacceptable to their parents, particularly to the father.
    No preview · Article · Jul 2013 · Japanese Psychological Research
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    Gert Stulp · Abraham P Buunk · Thomas V Pollet
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    ABSTRACT: a b s t r a c t Physical characteristics, such as height, play an important role in human mate preferences. Satisfaction with one's own height and one's partner height seem likely to be related to these preferences. Using a student sample (N = 650), we show that women are not only more selective, but also more consistent, than men, in their partner height preferences. Women prefer, on average, a larger height difference between themselves and their partner (i.e. males being much taller than themselves) than men do. This effect is even more pronounced when examining satisfaction with actual partner height: women are most satisfied when their partner was 21 cm taller, whereas men are most satisfied when they were 8 cm taller than their partner. Next, using data from our sample and that of a previously published study (N = 52,677), we show that for men, height is more important to the expression of satisfaction with one's own height than it is for women. Furthermore, slightly above average height women and tall men are most satisfied with their heights. We conclude that satisfaction with one's own height is at least partly a consequence of the height preference of the opposite sex and satisfaction with one's partner height.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2013 · Personality and Individual Differences