We examine how task jointness and group incentive structures bear on the nature and strength of the affective and cognitive ties that people forge to a group. The argument is that affective group ties have stronger effects on social order than cognitive group ties. There are two general hypotheses. First, joint tasks generate stronger cognitive and affective ties to groups, whereas group incentives generate cognitive but not necessarily affective ties to the group. Second, affective ties more effectively solve two fundamental problems of social order in groups: (1) sustaining membership (also known as stay behavior) and (2) generating the joint gains of further collaboration (cooperation). The theoretical logic is that joint tasks promote a sense of shared responsibility, and this leads members to attribute their individual emotions to the group as an object, whereas alignment of individual and group incentives does not produce such effects. The theory and hypotheses are tested experimentally in four-person open interaction groups, manipulating task jointness (high, low, none) and incentives (individual based vs. group based). The results generally support the hypotheses underlying the theoretical logic. Affective ties to groups are based primarily on levels of task jointness, and such tasks have stronger effects than incentives on the capacity of groups to retain membership and induce cooperation in social dilemmas.
|Number of pages||24|
|Journal||Social Psychology Quarterly|
|State||Published - 1 Jun 2019|
- affective ties
- group ties
- social order