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Understanding Social Action, Promoting Human Rights$
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Ryan Goodman, Derek Jinks, and Andrew K. Woods

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780195371895

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195371895.001.0001

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The Psychology of Social Norms and the Promotion of Human Rights

The Psychology of Social Norms and the Promotion of Human Rights

Chapter:
(p.23) 2 The Psychology of Social Norms and the Promotion of Human Rights
Source:
Understanding Social Action, Promoting Human Rights
Author(s):

Deborah A. Prentice

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195371895.003.0002

In Chapter 2, social psychologist Deborah Prentice describes her empirical work on social-norms marketing campaigns. Prentice highlights two key empirical findings: (1) actors often overestimate the prevalence of many undesirable behaviors, and (2) actors use their perceptions of peer norms as a standard against which to compare their own behaviors. Social-norms campaigns reduce problem behaviors (or increase desirable behaviors) by conveying information that counters this “pluralistic ignorance”.

Keywords:   social norms, pluralistic ignorance, descriptive norms, injunctive norms, binge drinking, cascade, tipping point

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