UCL Psychology and Language Sciences


Social Cognition Seminar - Personal control: Consequences for interpersonal and intergroup processes

09 February 2017, 3:00 pm–4:00 pm

Event Information


Room 311, 26 Bedford Way, WC1H 0AP

Speaker: Dr Aleksandra Cichocka, University of Kent

Research in social psychology focuses extensively on compensatory processes associated with low personal control.  In the current talk I shift focus to examining consequences of high personal control. Feelings of personal control are linked to individual wellbeing. I will discuss findings from two research programs which examine their associations with interpersonal and intergroup processes. First, I will discuss studies distinguishing interpersonal concomitants of experiencing personal control versus control over others.  Three studies demonstrated that although feelings of control over others were associated with interpersonal exploitativeness and aggression, high personal control was negatively associated with these outcomes. Second, I will discuss studies which examined the effects of control motivation on in-group positivity. Past research suggests that people compensate for low personal control by increasing support for social in-groups. We demonstrated that the effect of personal control on in-group positivity depends on the type of in-group positivity. Low personal control increases compensatory, narcissistic in-group positivity (linked to negative intergroup outcomes), while high personal control increases secure, non-narcissistic in-group positivity (linked to positive intergroup outcomes). Implications of the study of control and power will be discussed.

Time: 3pm, 9th February 2017

Venue: Room 311, 26 Bedford Way, WC1H 0AP