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Failure as an asset for high-status persons - relative group performance and attributed occupational success

[journal article]

Reinhard, Marc-André; Stahlberg, Dagmar; Messner, Matthias

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Please use the following Persistent Identifier (PID) to cite this document:http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0168-ssoar-243382

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Abstract According to research on social identity theory and on prescriptive norms and stereotypes people are viewed as prototypical of a group to the extent that they possess ingroup characteristics but not outgroup characteristics. Following this assumption, even failure might have positive effects for high-status persons when they underperform in low-status domains. In this case, individual failure may be viewed as indicative of strong prototypicality for the high-status group and therefore lead to the attribution of future occupational success. Five experiments, using different high- and low-status groups, confirmed the hypothesis that people will attribute high occupational success to high-status persons who allegedly scored poorly on an achievement test in which a low-status group in general excelled relative to a high-status group. This effect was shown to be mediated by the attribution of prototypicality for the high-status group.
Classification Social Psychology
Free Keywords (Gender)stereotypes; Attribution of success; Attribution of failure; Low- and high-status groups
Document language English
Publication Year 2008
Page/Pages p. 501-518
Journal Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 44 (2008) 3
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jesp.2007.07.006
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)