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How an individual is moved by the group: influences of perceived action radicality, social identity and leadership on an individual's intent to act

Jansen, Tom (2014) How an individual is moved by the group: influences of perceived action radicality, social identity and leadership on an individual's intent to act.

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Abstract:Terrorism has been a serious problem throughout history and throughout communities around the world. Most contemporary research suggest that processes which drive individuals towards terrorism are fundamentally equivalent to those that emerge in normal groups. Using college students as participants, the aim of the current study was to provide more insight in group radicalization processes, exploring the effects of perceived action radicality, social identity and leadership on an individual’s intent to act in accordance with a group’s collective decision. Seventy two participants completed the entire experiment. Over the course of five days college students were asked, both individually and under influence of a small group, to respond to scenario describing a hypothetical situation in which students of a particular university were faced with significant threats concerning their position as a student at the university. Seventy two participants completed the entire experiment. We found social identity plays a significant role in explaining a group’s influence on an individual’s intent to act after a collective decision is made (p = .006). We furthermore found that the intent to act in accordance with group norms significantly and continuously increases over time (p < .001). Together with the finding that perceived action radicality does not change over time and the finding that removing a group’s leader does not affect the intent to act in accordance with group norms, the current study shows there is a need for a new, long-term counter-terrorism strategy where special focus needs to be placed on an early identification of possible ‘candidates’ for recruitment by terrorist organization.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/64900
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