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Do 7-year-old children understand social leverage?

Sánchez-Amaro, Alejandro, Duguid, Shona ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4844-0673, Call, Josep ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8597-8336 and Tomasello, Michael (2020) Do 7-year-old children understand social leverage? Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 199 (10496).

Sanchez Amaro_7yoleverage_JECP.pdf - Accepted Version

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Individuals with an advantageous position during a negotiation possess leverage over their partners. Several studies with adults have investigated how leverage can influence the coordination strategies of individuals when conflicts of interest arise. In this study we explored how pairs of seven-year-old children solved a coordination game (based on the Snowdrift scenario) when one of the children had leverage over the other. We presented a social dilemma in the form of an unequal reward distribution on a rotating tray. The rotating tray could be accessed by both children. The child that waited longer to act received the best outcome but if both waited too long, they would lose the rewards. In addition, one child could forego the access to the rotating tray for an alternative option—the leverage. Although children did not always use their leverage strategically, children with access to the alternative were less likely to play the social dilemma, especially when their leverage was larger. Furthermore, children waited longer to act as the leverage decreased. Finally, children almost never failed to coordinate. The results hint to a trade-off between maximizing benefits while maintaining long-term collaboration in complex scenarios where strategies such as turn-taking are hard to implement.

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2020.104963
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF180-198.7 Experimental psychology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology > BF712-724.85 Developmental psychology
School/Department: School of Education, Language and Psychology
URI: https://ray.yorksj.ac.uk/id/eprint/9181

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