Seeking help from the low status group: Effects of status stability, type of help and social categorization
Author(s): Samer Halabi, John F. Dovidio, Arie Nadler
Abstract: This research extended previous work on the relationship between intergroup status and helping exchanges by investigating the conditions that moderate the willingness of members of a high status group (psychology students) to seek help from a low status group (social work students). In Study 1, when participants believed that there was a threat to the stability of status relations, participants from the high status group were more willing to seek autonomy-oriented assistance, which is empowering, than dependency-oriented help, which could undermine their group\'s advantaged status. Study 2 considered how reframing the nature of intergroup relations by emphasizing common superordinate group membership can influence help-seeking among members of high status groups. When separate group identities were emphasized, the results replicated. However, as predicted, when common identity as mental health professional was made salient, psychology students were as willing to seek autonomy- and dependency-oriented help across both the unstable- and stable-relations conditions. Theoretical and applied implications are discussed.
Publication Title: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Vol. 53, July 2014
Pub Year: 2014
Pages: 139 – 144
Keywords: group status, helping, social identity

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