Identity and Emergency Intervention: How Social Group Membership and Inclusiveness of Group Boundaries Shape Helping Behavior

M Levine, A Prosser, D Evans, Stephen David Reicher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

512 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Two experiments exploring the effects of social category membership on real-life helping behavior are reported. In Study 1, inter-group rivalries between soccer fans are used to examine the role of identity in emergency helping. An injured stranger wearing an in-gm-up team shirt is more likely to be helped than when wearing a rival team shirt. or an unbranded sports shirt. In Study 2, a more inclusive social categorization is made salient for potential helpers. Helping is extended to those who were previously identified as out-group members but not to those who do not display signs of group membership. Taken together, the studies show the importance of both shared identity between bystander and victim and the inclusiveness of salient identity for increasing the likelihood of emergency intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-453
Number of pages11
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2005

Keywords

  • social identity
  • group membership
  • emergency intervention
  • helping
  • SELF
  • ALTRUISM
  • SIMILARITY
  • MOTIVATION
  • COGNITION
  • CITIES

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