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The added value of respect: Reaching across inequality


Correspondence should be addressed to Bernd Simon, Institut für Psychologie, Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Olshausenstr, 40, 24098 Kiel, Germany (e-mail:


The experiment (N =80) tested whether the effectiveness of intragroup respect is moderated by structural (in)equality between the self and the rest of one's group. Equality (restricted vs. full rights) and respect (disrespect vs. respect) were manipulated as independent variables, while collective identification and willingness to engage in group-serving behaviour were the main dependent variables. Moderation was confirmed such that the positive effects of respect were more pronounced among group members with restricted rights than among group members with full rights. Moreover, respect fully compensated for the initial deficit in self-perception as a fully fledged group member. However, there was also some indication that, when money is at stake, formal guarantees of equality may be necessary for respect to have a facilitative effect on individual sacrifices for the sake of the group. The practical and political implications of the results are discussed.