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Who tugs at our heart strings? The effect of avatar images on player generosity in the dictator game.

Buchanan, Kathryn Emma and Rolison, Jonathan James and Jinga, Isadora and Thompson, Jessica and Russo, Riccardo (2021) 'Who tugs at our heart strings? The effect of avatar images on player generosity in the dictator game.' Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. p. 174702182110503. ISSN 1747-0218

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Abstract

The present research was motivated by a prior study, where several wallets, each containing a photo of either a baby, a puppy, a family, or an elderly couple, were scattered across a city in the United Kingdom (Wiseman, 2009). Most of the wallets containing a photo of a baby were returned compared to less than a third of wallets containing a photo of an elderly couple. To investigate further, in a series of three studies we examined, using a pseudo online version of the dictator game, possible subtle cues supporting prosocial behaviour by manipulating the type of avatar used by the recipient of the donation made by the 'dictator'. Overall, it emerged that participants showed significantly higher levels of generosity towards babies, and older people, supporting the notion that perceptions of vulnerability and need drive prosocial behaviour.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Generosity; avatar images; prosocial behaviour
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 02 Nov 2021 11:47
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 14:32
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/31347

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