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<xTITLE>A video game tests racial bias - and the willingness to pull the trigger</xTITLE>

A video game tests racial bias - and the willingness to pull the trigger

by Diane J. Levin

From Mediation Channel

Diane J. Levin

Racial bias and the decision to shootJoshua Correll, a member of the University of Chicago Department of Psychology faculty, in conjunction with his work with the Stereotyping & Prejudice Research Laboratory, has created The Police Officer’s Dilemma, a video game that tests the effect of racial bias on decisions to shoot.

When you launch the game, you are presented with a series of images of young men against various backgrounds. Some of the men hold guns, while others hold innocent items like cellphones or soda cans. Half of the men are black and half are white. You must shoot all armed men but holster your gun at the sight of those who are unarmed. The game tests whether the target’s race influences the decision to shoot. The results are chilling:

Participants shoot an armed target more quickly and more often when that target is Black, rather than White. However, participants decide not to shoot an unarmed target more quickly and more often when the target is White, rather than Black. In essence, participants seem to process stereotype-consistent targets (armed Blacks and unarmed Whites) more easily than counterstereotypic targets (unarmed Blacks and armed Whites).

To play the game, you can test yourself with the beta version. You may be shocked by the results.

(Via On the Ground.)

Biography


Diane Levin, J.D., is a mediator, dispute resolution trainer, negotiation coach, writer, and lawyer based in Marblehead, Massachusetts, who has instructed people from around the world in the art of talking it out. Since 1995 she has helped clients resolve disputes involving tort, employment, business, estate, family, and real property issues, and serves on numerous mediation panels, including the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Training and coaching are an enduring passion -- she has taught thousands of people to resolve conflict, negotiate better, or become mediators -- from Croatian judges to Fortune 500 executives.

 

A geek at heart, Levin consults on web design and social media to professionals.  She blogs about ADR at the intersection of law, science, and popular culture at the award-winning MediationChannel.com, regarded as one of the world's top ADR blogs.  She also tracks and catalogues ADR blogs world-wide at ADRblogs.com, where she has created a community for bloggers writing about constructive ways to resolve disputes.

 

web site: http://dianelevin.com



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