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Trustworthiness perception at zero acquaintance: Consensus, accuracy, and prejudice

  • Jean-François Bonnefon (a1), Astrid Hopfensitz (a2) (a3) and Wim De Neys (a4)

Research on trustworthiness perception from faces has unfolded in a way that is strikingly reminiscent of Jussim's narrative in his 2012 book. Jussim's analysis warns us against overemphasizing evidence about prejudice over evidence about accuracy, when both are scant; and reminds us to hold all accounts to the same standards, whether they call on societal biases or true signals.

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J. F. Bonnefon , A. Hopfensitz & W. De Neys (2013) The modular nature of trustworthiness detection. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 142:143–50.

J. F. Bonnefon , A. Hopfensitz & W. De Neys (2015) Face-ism and kernels of truth in facial inferences. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 19:421–22.

E. J. Cogsdill , A. T. Todorov , E. S. Spelke & M. R. Banaji (2014) Inferring character from faces: A developmental study. Psychological Science 25:1132–39.

W. De Neys , A. Hopfensitz & J.-F. Bonnefon (2015) Adolescents gradually improve at detecting trustworthiness from the facial features of unknown adults. Journal of Economic Psychology 47:1722.

L. Jussim (2012) Social perception and social reality: Why accuracy dominates bias and self-fulfilling prophecy. Oxford University Press.

C. Y. Olivola , F. Funk & A. Todorov (2014) Social attributions from faces bias human choices. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 18:566–70.

S. Porter , L. England , M. Juodis , L. ten Brinke & K. Wilson (2008) Is the face a window to the soul? Investigation of the accuracy of intuitive judgments of the trustworthiness of human faces. Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science 40:171–77.

S. Porter , C. Gustaw & L. ten Brinke (2010) Dangerous decisions: The impact of first impressions of trustworthiness on the evaluation of legal evidence and defendant culpability. Psychology, Crime, and Law 16:477–91.

N. O. Rule , N. Ambady , R. B. Adams Jr., H. Ozono , S. Nakashima , S. Yoshikawa & M. Watabe (2010) Polling the face: Prediction and consensus across cultures. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 98:115.

M. Stirrat & D. I. Perrett (2010) Valid facial cues to cooperation and trust: Male facial width and trustworthiness. Psychological Science 21:349–54.

A. Todorov , F. Funk & C. Y. Olivola (2015a) Response to Bonnefon et al.: Limited “kernels of truth” in facial inferences. Trends in Cognitive Sciences 19:422.

A. Todorov , C. Y. Olivola , R. Dotsch & P. Mende-Siedlecki (2015b) Social attributions from faces: Determinants, consequences, accuracy, and functional significance. Annual Review of Psychology 66:519–45.

J. Willis & A. Todorov (2006) First impressions: Making up your mind after 100 ms exposure to a face. Psychological Science 17:592–98.

J. P. Wilson & N. O. Rule (2015) Facial trustworthiness predicts extreme criminal-sentencing outcomes. Psychological Science 26:1325–31.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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