Mutual Influence of Moral Values, Mental Models and Social Dynamics on Intergroup Conflict
Final rept. 1 May 2010-30 Apr 2013
ARTIS RESEARCH AND RISK MODELING PHOENIX AZ
Pagination or Media Count:
We have provided empirical support from real-world conflict areas for several ways in which devoted actors driven by sacred values deviate from rational actors in their willingness to sacrifice self-interest, including violation of transitivity in preferences, insensitivity or reverse sensitivity to quantity, immunity to tradeoffs coupled with a backfire effect, where offers of material incentives or disincentives to give up sacred values leads to emotional retrenchment--including anger, disgust and moral outrage--and heightened refusal to compromise or negotiate, a rule-bound logic of moral appropriateness to do what is morally right no matter the likely risks or rewards, brain-imaging patterns consistent with processing sacred values as rules rather than as calculations of costs and consequences, and with processing perceived violations of sacred values as emotionally agitating. Our interviews and experiments with leaders and networks of committed advocates e.g., militants in several cultural settings and conflict zones reveal strategies for how these values become widespread, entrenched and resistant to standard negotiation attempts at compromise. But our findings also show that culturally sensitive attempts to offer powerful symbolic gestures often increase flexibility towards compromise.
- Sociology and Law