Impact University: Social Psychology

Behavioral Economics/Psychology

Having Less, Giving More: The influence of social class on prosocial behavior >

Piff, PK.; Kraus, MW.; Côté, S.; Cheng, BH.; & Keltner, D. (2010-11, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology): "Lower social class (or socioeconomic status) is associated with fewer resources, greater exposure to threat, and a reduced sense of personal control. Given these life circumstances, one might expect lower class individuals to engage in less prosocial behavior, prioritizing self-interest over the welfare of others. The authors hypothesized, by contrast, that lower class individuals orient to the welfare of others as a means to adapt to their more hostile environments and that this orientation gives rise to greater prosocial behavior."

Behavioral Economics

Extreme Wealth Is Bad for Everyone—Especially the Wealthy >

Lewis, M. (2014-11-12, New Republic): The wealth gap in the United States is widening. In this article, Lewis discuses whether this increasing concentration of wealth is empowering the wealthy to affect political outcomes. Lewis then presents the more novel idea that those who are extremely wealthy experience changes in their brain chemistry. Lewis cites several studies which show that people who are extremely wealthy are less likely to be able to empathize with others and are not as happy as their poorer counterparts.

Civic Engagement/ Demographics

To the Class of 2013 : Resist Simplicity >

Carter, S.L. (2013-05-09, Bloomberg View): Today's world has become a difficult and often frightening place to live where people face many challenges. The current generation must look to build a better America and think for themselves.

College Preparedness & Success

The Parenting Gap >

Reeves, R. (2013-Fall, The Democracy Journal): There is a cacophonous debate on how to reform schools, open up colleges, and widen access to pre-K learning. But too little attention is paid to another divide affecting social mobility—the parenting gap.

Behavioral Economics

Escaping the Cycle of Scarcity >

Rosenberg, T. (2013-09-25, The New York Times): Do self-destructive behaviors among the poor cause poverty, or does poverty cause these behaviors? According to a new book, one explanation for bad decisions is scarcity -- not of money, but of mental capacity that we can employ to make decisions.

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