Spassena P. Koleva

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The moral domain is broader than the empathy and justice concerns assessed by existing measures of moral competence, and it is not just a subset of the values assessed by value inventories. To fill the need for reliable and theoretically grounded measurement of the full range of moral concerns, we developed the Moral Foundations Questionnaire on the basis(More)
Many methods for reducing implicit prejudice have been identified, but little is known about their relative effectiveness. We held a research contest to experimentally compare interventions for reducing the expression of implicit racial prejudice. Teams submitted 17 interventions that were tested an average of 3.70 times each in 4 studies (total N =(More)
Commentators have noted that the issue stands taken by each side of the American ‘‘culture war’’ lack conceptual consistency and can even seem contradictory. We sought to understand the psychological underpinnings of culture war attitudes using Moral Foundations Theory. In two studies involving 24,739 participants and 20 such issues (e.g. abortion,(More)
A long-standing puzzle for moral philosophers and psychologists alike is the concept of psychopathy, a personality disorder marked by tendencies to defy moral norms despite cognitive knowledge about right and wrong. Previously, discussions of the moral deficits of psychopathy have focused on willingness to harm and cheat others as well as reasoning about(More)
Past studies have documented interpersonal benefits of natural environments. Across four studies, we tested the hypothesis that exposure to more beautiful nature, relative to less beautiful nature, increases prosocial behavior. Study 1 yielded correlational evidence indicating that participants prone to perceiving natural beauty reported greater prosocial(More)
Libertarians are an increasingly prominent ideological group in U.S. politics, yet they have been largely unstudied. Across 16 measures in a large web-based sample that included 11,994 self-identified libertarians, we sought to understand the moral and psychological characteristics of self-described libertarians. Based on an intuitionist view of moral(More)
Psychologists who study morality have argued that moral behavior is influenced by how central morality is to one’s sense of self. For instance, individuals who are considered to be moral exemplars tend to place more importance on moral traits and values when defining their self-concepts (Colby & Damon, 1995). This paper takes the next step of examining(More)
The two leading candidates for the 2008 Democratic Party presidential nomination, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, had very similar policy positions and yet demonstrated appeal to disparate populations. Much has been written in the press about demographic differences between supporters of these candidates, but little is known about these groups’(More)
Throughout history, principles such as obedience, loyalty, and purity have been instrumental in binding people together and helping them thrive as groups, tribes, and nations. However, these same principles have also led to in-group favoritism, war, and even genocide. Does adhering to the binding moral foundations that underlie such principles unavoidably(More)
Libertarians are an increasingly vocal ideological group in U.S. politics, yet they are understudied compared to liberals and conservatives. Much of what is known about libertarians is based on the writing of libertarian intellectuals and political leaders, rather than surveying libertarians in the general population. Across three studies, 15 measures, and(More)