Group consensus in social influence: type of consensus information as a moderator of majority and minority influence

Antonis Gardikiotis, Robin Martin, Miles Hewstone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Three experiments investigated the effect of consensus information on majority and minority influence. Experiment 1 examined the effect of consensus expressed by descriptive adjectives (large vs. small) on social influence. A large source resulted in more influence than a small source, irrespective of source status (majority vs. minority). Experiment 2 showed that large sources affected attitudes heuristically, whereas only a small minority instigated systematic processing of the message. Experiment 3 manipulated the type of consensus information, either in terms of descriptive adjectives (large, small) or percentages (82%, 18%, 52%, 48%). When consensus was expressed in terms of descriptive adjectives, the findings of Experiments 1 and 2 were replicated (large sources were more influential than small sources), but when consensus was expressed in terms of percentages, the majority was more influential than the minority, irrespective of group consensus.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1163-1174
Number of pages12
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Volume31
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2005

Keywords

  • minority influence
  • group consensus

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