Document Type


Subject Area(s)

Sociology, Social Groups


Can people influence others solely by virtue of shared group membership? To address this and related questions, we offer a theory of group-mediated social influence and then test it in a standardized collective task setting. The theory capitalizes on uncertainty reduction principles found in two longstanding social psychological traditions: social identity theory and status characteristics theory. Our primary hypothesis was that in-group members would be more influential than out-group members. Results from the experiment indicate that in-group members were indeed more influential than out-group members. These findings supported a key derivation of our theory, and demonstrated that the integration accounts for phenomena that are not addressed by either of the motivating theories.

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Sociology Commons