Post List

Social Science posts

(Modify Search »)

  • June 21, 2011
  • 04:24 AM

Autism In The I.T. Crowd

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

Is autism more common in Silicon Valley?A new study from Simon Baron-Cohen and colleagues asked pretty much this question, although rather than California, they looked at Eindhoven in Holland. Eindhoven is the tech hub of the Netherlands:This region contains the Eindhoven University of Technology, as well as the High Tech Campus Eindhoven, where IT and technology companies such as Philips, ASML, IBM and ATOS Origin are based... 30% of jobs in Eindhoven are now in technology or ICT, in Haarlem an........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2011
  • 11:24 AM

The Status Paradox

by Psych Your Mind in Psych Your Mind

Social hierarchies are quite complicated. In the animal world hierarchies are wildly different based on social contexts, species, and environmental factors. For some animals, such as bull elephant seals, hierarchies are unstable—individuals spend a relatively short times at the top of the food chain—and what these alpha males get in terms of mating preferences, they pay dearly for in terms of physical fighting, aggressive confrontation, and threats from other male rivals. In unstable hierarc........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Immigration Polls and Lying College Grads and Liberals

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

After 9/11/2001 we did some research that uncovered a number of questions we successfully used for the better part of two years to identify plaintiff and defense jurors.  And then—just like that—the questions stopped differentiating. The response patterns that were effective in identifying jurors who were good for us or bad for us had changed. [...]

Related posts:Polls and Prejudice
Can you see me now? Different races & familiar places
... Read more »

Janus, A.L. (2010) The influence of social desirability pressures on expressed immigration attitudes. Social Science Quarterly, 91(4), 928-946. info:/

  • June 20, 2011
  • 05:30 AM

Obesity's contagious, or is it? A sober second look at obesity and social networks.

by Yoni Freedhoff in Weighty Matters

Right off the top let me say I'm not well versed enough in statistics to know who's right.On one side of the fence are the findings of Christakis and Fowler, famously published in the New England Journal of Medicine that posited obesity is socially contagious. Non-statistically, their paper didn't sit right with me, but as far as stats go, I'm no maven.On the other side of the fence is a new paper published by Russel Lyons who posits that Christakis' and Fowler's work is a great example of stat........ Read more »

  • June 20, 2011
  • 04:13 AM

Tyranny of Language

by Ingrid Piller in Language on the Move

Our contributor in Karachi, Md. Ali Khan, has alerted me to what seems to be a fascinating book: The Tyranny of Language in Education by Zubeida Mustafa published by Ushba Books. I’d love to read the book but trying to … Continue reading →... Read more »

Han, Huamei. (2011) Social inclusion through multilingual ideologies, policies and practices: a case study of a minority church. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 14(4), 383-398. info:/

  • June 19, 2011
  • 07:14 PM

How to get a village named after your company? – A curious case of ‘’ Nagar

by Kandarp Mehta in Creatologue - Exploring Creativity

It was in news yesterday that a village in India named Shivnagar, changed it’s name to ‘’-Nagar. When I read the headline, my reaction was, ‘What? How much would they have paid to sponsor the entire village? For how long?’ … Continue reading →... Read more »

  • June 19, 2011
  • 05:05 PM

Disturbances versus disruptions

by Jan Husdal in

Supply chain disturbances and supply chain disruptions. Not the same and very different from each other. The former can be managed and solved within an established supply chain, the latter often requires establishing a new supply network. Understanding this difference is imperative to risk management.... Read more »

Phil Greening, & Christine Rutherford. (2011) Disruptions and supply networks: a multi-level, multi-theoretical relational perspective. International Journal of Logistics Management, 22(1), 104-126. info:/

  • June 18, 2011
  • 05:55 PM

Creative cultural transmission as chaotic sampling

by Sean Roberts in A Replicated Typo 2.0

Chaos has been used to create variations on musical and dance sequences (Dabby, 2008; Bradley & Stuart, 1998). Here, I apply this to birdsong. It could also be used to model the evolution of creative cultural features.... Read more »

Bradley E, & Stuart J. (1998) Using chaos to generate variations on movement sequences. Chaos (Woodbury, N.Y.), 8(4), 800-807. PMID: 12779786  

Kiebel SJ, Daunizeau J, & Friston KJ. (2008) A hierarchy of time-scales and the brain. PLoS computational biology, 4(11). PMID: 19008936  

  • June 17, 2011
  • 05:03 PM

Where does your empathy come from?

by eHarmony Labs in eHarmony Labs Blog

Do you ever get to the point where you feel as though you and your partner have absolutely nothing in common? Read further to find out the one common thread that lies in almost all of us. ... Read more »

Ramachandran, V. S. . (2001) Synaesthesia - a window into perception, thought and language. Journal of Consciousness Studies, 3-34. info:/

  • June 17, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Pretrial publicity & jury deliberations

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

There was much discussion when the Supreme Court decided Jeffrey Skilling had gotten a fair trial despite extreme pre-trial publicity. The letter published in the Orlando Sentinel from a dismissed Casey Anthony trial juror raises the issue again. I was one of the 50 potential jurors excused from service on the Casey Anthony trial today because [...]

Related posts:Educating Jurors: How NOT to start deliberations
Deliberations & the role of the presiding juror
Simple Jury Persuasion: Count........ Read more »

Ruva, CL, & LeVasseur, MA. (2011) Behind closed doors: The effect of pretrial publicity on jury deliberations. . Psychology, Crime . info:/

  • June 17, 2011
  • 03:27 AM

Bipolar Kids: You Read It Here First

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

Last year, I discussed the controvery over the proposed new childhood syndrome of "Temper Disregulation Disorder with Dysphoria" (TDDD). It may be included in the upcoming revision of the psychiatric bible, DSM-V.Back then, I said:TDDD has been proposed in order to reduce the number of children being diagnosed with pediatric bipolar disorder... many people agree that pediatric bipolar is being over-diagnosed.So we can all sympathize with the sentiment behind TDDD - but this is fighting fire wit........ Read more »

Van Meter AR, Moreira AL, & Youngstrom EA. (2011) Meta-analysis of epidemiologic studies of pediatric bipolar disorder. The Journal of clinical psychiatry. PMID: 21672501  

Axelson DA, Birmaher B, Findling RL, Fristad MA, Kowatch RA, Youngstrom EA, Arnold EL, Goldstein BI, Goldstein TR, Chang KD.... (2011) Concerns regarding the inclusion of temper dysregulation disorder with dysphoria in the DSM-V. The Journal of clinical psychiatry. PMID: 21672494  

  • June 16, 2011
  • 05:46 PM

Safety in numbers

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

Back in 2009, I blogged about some then-unpublished studies by Will Gervais, a social psychologist at the University of British Columbia (Why are atheists so disliked). The results suggested that one of the reasons that atheists in the USA are so disliked is because they are distrusted, and that at least part of this distrust was simply because atheists are few and far between - and so they seem strange and unfamiliar.

Gervais has a new paper out that covers some of the same territory but exte........ Read more »

  • June 16, 2011
  • 11:03 AM

Spot the Jurors Who Feel Entitled to Award Higher Damages

by Persuasion Strategies in Persuasive Litigator

We all remember Aesop's fable of the happy-go-lucky grasshopper who played away the summer while the ants worked industriously. When winter came, and the hungry grasshopper ended up at the ant's door, the moral of the story became clear: entitlement, the feeling that the world owes you a living, will not get you through the winter. But according to some new research, entitlement will lead to higher damages in civil litigation. In the current issue of The Jury Expert, Gary Giewat reports on da........ Read more »

Zitek EM, Jordan AH, Monin B, & Leach FR. (2010) Victim entitlement to behave selfishly. Journal of personality and social psychology, 98(2), 245-55. PMID: 20085398  

  • June 15, 2011
  • 04:16 PM

To Be or Not to Be Monogamous?

by Krystal D'Costa in Anthropology in Practice

What does it mean to be monogamous?Sexual exclusivity between two partners?
A two-party partnership, characterized by cooperation where resources are shared and children are produced?
A genetic commitment to producing offspring with a single partner?
A social system in which only two people are contracted to marriage at a time?
Or is it perhaps some combination of these four?
For some people, establishing yourself in an exclusively committed relationship where you wake up next to the same perso........ Read more »

Curtis, J. Thomas, & Wang, Z. (2003) The Neurochemistry of Pair Bonding. Current Directions in Psychology, 12(2), 49-53. info:/

Fuentes, A. (1998) Re-Evaluating Primate Monogamy. American Anthropologist, 100(4), 890-907. DOI: 10.1525/aa.1998.100.4.890  

  • June 15, 2011
  • 02:34 PM

A Ray of Light on Stonehenge

by Cris Campbell in Genealogy of Religion

If you have ever suffered through an episode of “Ancient Aliens” on the History Channel, you might believe that every megalithic structure in the world was constructed by extraterrestrials:

Apparently inspired by the show, one credulous soul posted this question over at “Can scientists prove that Stonehenge was not built by ancient astronauts?” The pithy [...]... Read more »

Ray, B. (1987) Stonehenge: A New Theory. History of Religions, 26(3), 225. DOI: 10.1086/463079  

  • June 15, 2011
  • 07:08 AM

Quo Vadis, SCRM?

by Jan Husdal in

This is a well-researched and methodologically sound article, which brilliantly sums up the core topics and clusters of supply chain risk management and how they have developed since the early 1990s, and where SCRM may be headed to in the future. That said, it is an article that is not totally without flaws.... Read more »

  • June 15, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

“For $15M, I’d marry a saber-toothed tiger!”

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

Family law cases are almost always sad. They are typically filled with issues of bitterness, betrayal, rejection and character. And if those aren’t distressing enough under normal circumstances, in Texas—if you are rich enough and angry enough—you can have a divorce trial in front of a jury. Recently as we did a focus group on a particularly [...]

Related posts:Charlie Sheen or Tiger Woods? When behavior doesn’t fit the image
Choosing to either disgust your jurors or tick them off
Go........ Read more »

Vazire, Simine, & Carlson, Erika. (2011) Others sometimes know us better than we know ourselves. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 20(2), 104-108. info:/

  • June 15, 2011
  • 12:15 AM

Cultural Evolution and the Impending Singularity

by Sean Roberts in A Replicated Typo 2.0

Prof. Alfred Hulber is an actual mad professor who is a danger to life as we know it. In a talk this evening he went from ball bearings in castor oil to hyper-advanced machine intelligence. However, will hyper-intelligent machines actually give us a better scientific understanding of the universe, or will they just spend their time playing tetris?... Read more »

Sperl, M., Chang, A., Weber, N., & Hübler, A. (1999) Hebbian learning in the agglomeration of conducting particles. Physical Review E, 59(3), 3165-3168. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.59.3165  

Bettencourt LM, Lobo J, Helbing D, Kühnert C, & West GB. (2007) Growth, innovation, scaling, and the pace of life in cities. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104(17), 7301-6. PMID: 17438298  

Chater N, & Christiansen MH. (2010) Language acquisition meets language evolution. Cognitive science, 34(7), 1131-57. PMID: 21564247  

  • June 14, 2011
  • 07:30 PM

Breaking rules makes you seem powerful

by SAGE Insight in SAGE Insight

Breaking the rules to rise to power: how norm violators gain power in the eyes of others From Social Psychological and Personality Science  When people have power, they act the part. Powerful people smile less, interrupt others, and speak in a louder voice. When people do not respect the basic rules of social behavior, they [...]... Read more »

Van Kleef, G., Homan, A., Finkenauer, C., Gundemir, S., & Stamkou, E. (2011) Breaking the Rules to Rise to Power: How Norm Violators Gain Power in the Eyes of Others. Social Psychological and Personality Science. DOI: 10.1177/1948550611398416  

  • June 14, 2011
  • 04:50 PM

Categorising languages through network modularity

by Sean Roberts in The Adventures of Auck

Today I've been learning more about network structure (from Cris Moore) and I've applied my poor understanding and overconfidence to find language families from etymology data! The analysis suggests a split between Germanic and Romance languages.... Read more »

Aaron Clauset, Cristopher Moore, & M. E. J. Newman. (2008) Hierarchical structure and the prediction of missing links in networks. Nature 453, 98 - 101 (2008). arXiv: 0811.0484v1

join us!

Do you write about peer-reviewed research in your blog? Use to make it easy for your readers — and others from around the world — to find your serious posts about academic research.

If you don't have a blog, you can still use our site to learn about fascinating developments in cutting-edge research from around the world.

Register Now

Research Blogging is powered by SMG Technology.

To learn more, visit