Those who fill both personas "compromise more and form better relationships" than those playing just one role, said Hunter Gehlbach, associate professor of education at Harvard. The experiment measured negotiation by giving volunteers a pretend commission that increased if they brought the other person closer to their side and decreased for concessions.
The tests are important, Gehlbach said, because it's one thing to know the correct scientific approaches to an environmental problem but another for disparate sides to agree on a solution.
"We know an awful lot about global warming, and yet there are a lot of personal and emotional, nonscientific barriers to getting better policies out there," Gehlbach said. "That's where I think the social science comes into play."
Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC. www.eenews.net, 202-628-6500