HCBE Faculty Presentations


Linking Group Entitativity and Perceivers’ Implicit Theories to Collective Blame

Event Location / Date(s)

Savannah, GA

Document Type

Conference Presentation

Presentation Date


Conference Name / Publication Title

Southern Management Association 2014 Meeting


The questions of whether, why, and when perceivers assign blame to members of a group besides the member(s) who directly caused a negative outcome are examined. Two experiments provide evidence that: 1. Higher levels of group entitativity are linked to higher levels of collective blame, 2. This link is mediated by inferences that group members (a) indirectly caused the act, and (b) share common character traits with the wrongdoer, and 3. Perceivers’ implicit theories about people’s traits are associated with systematic differences in the inferences they favor in associating entitativity with collective blame.