Thursday, July 28, 2005

CoPs or CoBs (Community of Bias)?

The role that intrapersonal and interpersonal biases have in the life of a person has always fascinating me a great deal.

Emily Pronin is a nice looking person that wrote some very interesting pieces of work. For example, a book chapter whose title is Understanding misunderstanding: social psychological perspective.

Among the many things, she points out how low tolerance to ambiguity makes a person go beyond the real facts and information that s/he is given. It would sound like low tolerance to exploration of ambiguity (that is, presence of more than one meaning in a word/statement) doesn't match with having a meaningful interaction (where meaningful means one that can generate meaning) either.

If men and women are, as Katz claims (1960, explained here), more rationalizing than rational, and therefore more influenced by their attitudes than by logic or evidence, and if we humans have the tendency toward accepting more easily what is congruent with our interest (Edwards & Smith, 1996; Ross & Lepper, 1980), then CoPs can be a source of bias. I am wondering if that plays a role in how a CoP has to be facilitated.

Pronin - and this is verrrry interesting - suggests that such bias fosters harsh evaluations. I would add that it might be worthy addressing this very issue when speaking about CoP facilitation.

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