Social Status as a Cue for Tacit Coordination
Author(s): Erik W. de Kwaadsteniet, Eric van Dijk
Abstract: The present paper investigates how and when social status may serve as a cue for tacit coordination. In three experimental studies, we demonstrate that low status individuals are inclined to defer to the preferences of high status individuals, thereby facilitating coordination success. Furthermore, we investigate the boundary conditions of this effect. More specifically, we show that social status only facilitates coordination success when the people involved have asymmetric (or conflicting) preferences (Study 2), and when there is a clear social hierarchy (Study 3). In the general discussion, we relate these findings to earlier research on dominance hierarchies, social power, deference and perspective-taking and we provide suggestions for future research.
Publication Title: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 46(3)
Pub Year: 2010
Pages: 515 – 524
Keywords: tacit coordination, social status, salience, deference

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