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CONFERENCE: Towards a Better Understanding of Implicit Bias Beyond Unconsciousness and Dishonesty

Next March 2 at 14:30 (2:30 PM), in the Silva Leal Auditorium, Autonomous Wing Building of Iscte, as part of the Lectures in Psychology Or in Other Social Sciences and Humanities of the Doctoral Program in Psychology, Dr Adam Hahn from the University of Bath, Department of Psychology, will give a talk titled Towards a Better Understanding of Implicit Bias Beyond Unconsciousness and Dishonesty.

© 2020 Gerd Altmann | Pixabay


Implicit measures – the results of indirect computerized reaction-time attitude measurements such as the Implicit Associations Task (the “IAT”, Greenwald, McGhee, & Schwartz, 1998) – are often described as reflecting “attitudes that people are unable or unwilling to report” (e.g., This suggests that people are either entirely unaware of their “unconscious” attitudes or unwilling to reveal them honestly. Dr Adam Hahn will present a series of projects that question both the utility and veracity of both of those explanations and show that under many circumstances, people are both willing and able to report on the evaluations reflected in implicit measures. Instead, he will present a model that can explain divergences between implicit bias and explicit attitudes in terms of other psychological (attention, failures in affective forecasting) and methodological (stimulus effects, calibration) factors. These findings have implications for cognitive and applied social psychology. Theoretically, they can lead to a better understanding of automaticity and consciousness in social cognition, suggesting a distinction between three types of conscious awareness of one’s own cognitions. From an applied perspective, a better understanding of the cognitions underlying implicit bias scores can lead applied researchers to design more effective interventions targeted at the acknowledgement of racial biases. Discussion will focus on how simplified and inaccurate explanations of implicit bias may not only be inaccurate but thwart the way for social-cognitive research to have an impact on important societal issues.

Access via Zoom - ID Meeting: 914 9287 8172

About Dr. Adam Hahn

Raised in Germany, Adam Hahn completed his undergraduate studies with a Diplom (M.Sc. equivalent) in general psychology at Freie Universität Berlin and Yale University in 2007. He completed an M.A. (2009) and a Ph.D. (2012) at the University of Colorado Boulder under the supervision of Bernadette Park and Chick Judd, and a postdoc with Bertram Gawronski at Western University in Canada. After six years as an assistant professor at the Social Cognition Center at the University of Cologne Germany, Adam joined the Department of Psychology at the University of Bath in 2020, where he currently works as a senior lecturer in social psychology. Adam Hahn’s research focuses on the social-cognitive underpinnings of stereotyping and prejudice, and attitudes more generally.

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