Project Information

Kurt Lewin Instituut
Heidelberglaan 1
Room Number H1.42
The Netherlands
T: +31 (0)30 - 253 3027

Project Information

Project Title
"Comparing the effects of explicit and implicit social identity threat"

University of Groningen - Social and Organizational Psychology

PhD Student
Jolien van Breen

Prof.dr. R. Spears (RuG)
Dr. T. Kuppens (RuG)
Dr. S. de Lemus (University of Granada)

16 October 2012 - 16 October 2016

External sources


Studies of social identity threat have found evidence for both disruptive effects and resistance. Resistance can occur implicitly as well as explicitly. Like resistance, the threat itself can also occur both explicitly and implicitly, and it has been suggested that people are more vulnerable to implicit than explicit social identity threat. Though common, this assumption has never been systematically studied. Therefore, the current project aims to examine whether implicit social identity threat is indeed more damaging to the individual’s self-concept than explicit social identity threat. 

The first study will use explicit and implicit measures of resistance to examine whether implicit threat can be resisted. If this is the case, a second study will compare implicit and explicit social identity threat, to examine whether participants are more vulnerable to, and less able to resist, implicit compared to explicit social identity threat. Subsequent studies will examine why this is the case. Is the physiological experience of implicit threat less pronounced? Alternatively, it may be that implicit threats are more difficult to perceive and address.

In sum, the current project will examine the similarities and differences between implicit and explicit social identity threat.

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KLI Conference 2016

KLI Best Paper Award 2016 for Anne Marthe van der Bles, MSc.

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