Stephen M. Garcia

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Social comparison-the tendency to self-evaluate by comparing ourselves to others-is an important source of competitive behavior. We propose a new model that distinguishes between individual and situational factors that increase social comparison and thus lead to a range of competitive attitudes and behavior. Individual factors are those that vary from(More)
Social comparison theories typically imply a comparable degree of competition between commensurate rivals who are competing on a mutually important dimension. However, the present analysis reveals that the degree of competition between such rivals depends on their proximity to a meaningful standard. Studies 1 to 3 test the prediction that individuals become(More)
This article introduces the N-effect-the discovery that increasing the number of competitors (N) can decrease competitive motivation. Studies 1a and 1b found evidence that average test scores (e.g., SAT scores) fall as the average number of test takers at test-taking venues increases. Study 2 found that individuals trying to finish an easy quiz among the(More)
Five studies merged the priming methodology with the bystander apathy literature and demonstrate how merely priming a social context at Time 1 leads to less helping behavior on a subsequent, completely unrelated task at Time 2. In Study 1, participants who imagined being with a group at Time 1 pledged significantly fewer dollars on a charity-giving measure(More)
This analysis introduces the Presenter’s Paradox. Robust findings in impression formation demonstrate that perceivers’ judgments show a weighted averaging pattern, which results in less favorable evaluations when mildly favorable information is added to highly favorable information. Across seven studies, we show that presenters do not anticipate this(More)
Despite the importance of doing so, people do not always correctly estimate the distribution of opinions within their group. One important mechanism underlying such misjudgments is people's tendency to infer that a familiar opinion is a prevalent one, even when its familiarity derives solely from the repeated expression of 1 group member. Six experiments(More)
In 3 studies, we tested the hypothesis that the higher ranked an individual's group is, the less cooperative the facial expression of that person is judged to be. Study 1 established this effect among business school deans, with observers rating individuals from higher ranked schools as appearing less cooperative, despite lacking prior knowledge of the(More)
Six studies explored the hypothesis that third parties are averse to resolving preference disputes with winner-take-all solutions when disputing factions belong to different social categories (e.g. gender, nationality, fi rms, etc.) versus the same social category. Studies 1–3 showed that third parties’ aversion to winner-take-all solutions, even when they(More)