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From facial characteristics to social judgments - Towards a comprehensive conceptual model of impression formation based on face perception

Titel Englisch From facial characteristics to social judgments - Towards a comprehensive conceptual model of impression formation based on face perception
Gesuchsteller/in Vetter Thomas
Nummer 135213
Förderungsinstrument Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
Forschungseinrichtung Fachbereich Informatik Departement Mathematik und Informatik Universität Basel
Hochschule Universität Basel - BS
Hauptdisziplin Psychologie
Beginn/Ende 01.06.2011 - 31.05.2016
Bewilligter Betrag 412'783.00
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Keywords (4)

person perception, faces, statistical models, personality

Lay Summary (Englisch)

Lead
Lay summary

People draw personality trait inferences about unfamiliar individuals on the basis of their facial appearance. These inferences are often inaccurate. However, they affect face memory and predict social behavior in different domains such as hiring decisions, election outcomes, eyewitness testimonies, and criminal sentencing. Recently, first steps have been undertaken to investigate the role of specific facial characteristics underlying personality trait judgments with the help of statistical face models (Oosterhof & Todorov, 2008; Walker & Vetter, 2009). Both approaches have been successful in modeling personality traits in faces in that a high degree of interpersonal consensus in forming these judgments was achieved. However, there are also inter-individual differences in forming personality trait judgments on the basis of facial appearance. Sources of dissent among judges are, for example, self-resemblance, resemblance of stimulus faces to familiar persons, or judge’s gender, and motives (Zebrowitz, Voinescu, & Collins, 1996).

This project aims at investigating how personality trait judgments are formed on the basis of faces from two perspectives: First, we will focus on stimulus characteristics, that is, we will use a newly developed statistical face model to identify the physiognomic correlates of a wide range of personality trait judgments. Second, we will focus on judges’ characteristics and investigate different sources of inter-individual consensus and dissent in direct comparison.

By bringing together approaches and methods from social psychology and computer graphics and vision, we are able to investigate the processes of impression formation on the basis of facial features in a comprehensive way. This project will not only result in new findings regarding physiognomic correlates of personality trait judgments and inter-individual sources of consensus and dissent on social judgments, but also in more precise personality trait vectors that can be used in future research in different psychological fields, such as social cognition, social neuroscience, or the media psychology.

Direktlink auf Lay Summary Letzte Aktualisierung: 21.02.2013

Verantw. Gesuchsteller/in und weitere Gesuchstellende

Mitarbeitende

Publikationen

Publikation
Changing the personality of a face: Perceived Big Two and Big Five personality factors modeled in real photographs
Walker Mirella, Vetter Thomas (2016), Changing the personality of a face: Perceived Big Two and Big Five personality factors modeled in real photographs, in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 110(4), 609-624.
Faced with exclusion: Perceived facial warmth and competence influence moral judgments of social exclusion.
Rudert S. C. Reutner L. Greifeneder R. & Walker M. (accepted), Faced with exclusion: Perceived facial warmth and competence influence moral judgments of social exclusion., in Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

Zusammenarbeit

Gruppe / Person Land
Felder der Zusammenarbeit
Angewandte Sozialpsychologie und Entscheidungsforschung, Universität Köln Deutschland (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Dietrich College Social and Decision Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Alex Todorov Lab / Princeton University Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychosomatische Medizin und Psychotherapie Deutschland (Europa)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation
Social Cognitive and Neural Sciences Lab, New York University Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika (Nordamerika)
- vertiefter/weiterführender Austausch von Ansätzen, Methoden oder Resultaten
- Publikation

Wissenschaftliche Veranstaltungen

Aktiver Beitrag

Titel Art des Beitrags Titel des Artikels oder Beitrages Datum Ort Beteiligte Personen
Invited talk at the Universität des Saarlandes Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Eindrucksbildung anhand von Gesichtern – Bildung, Validierung und Anwendung statistischer Gesichtermodelle. 09.06.2016 Saarbrücken, Deutschland Walker Mirella
17th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Poster The Basel Face Database 28.01.2016 San Diego, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Walker Mirella; Vetter Thomas; Greifeneder Rainer
17th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Poster Cold shoulders to cold faces? Facial appearance influences moral judgments of social exclusion. 28.01.2016 San Diego, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Greifeneder Rainer; Walker Mirella
17th ESCON Transfer of Knowledge Conference Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Giving the cold shoulder to the cold-looking person: Moral acceptance of social exclusion based on facial characteristics. 27.08.2015 Bensheim, Deutschland Walker Mirella; Greifeneder Rainer
16th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Statistical models of perceived Big Two and Big Five personality factors applied to real faces 27.02.2015 Long Beach, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Walker Mirella
ESCON Transfer of Knowledge Conference Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Changing the personality of a face. Applying statistical models of personality traits to real faces 03.09.2014 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgien Vetter Thomas; Walker Mirella
17th EASP General Meeting Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung The power of faces in first impressions – and beyond 09.07.2014 Amsterdam, Niederlande Vetter Thomas; Walker Mirella
15th Annual Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology Poster Two kinds of looking guilty: Criminal appearance and a lack of remorse affect guilt and punishment ratings differently 13.02.2014 Austin, Vereinigte Staaten von Amerika Walker Mirella
13th Congress of the Swiss Psychological Society Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung A novel statistical model of face perception 11.09.2013 Basel, Schweiz Walker Mirella; Vetter Thomas
13th Congress of the Swiss Psychological Society Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the most likeable of all? A novel method to measure self-enhancement regarding diverse personality dimensions 11.09.2013 Basel, Schweiz Walker Mirella; Keller Matthias
14. Tagung der Fachgruppe für Sozialpsychologie Vortrag im Rahmen einer Tagung Feminine-looking faces belong to warm and cheerful persons. The impact of subtle facial cues to femininity or masculinity on social judgments 01.09.2013 Hagen, Deutschland Walker Mirella


Selber organisiert

Titel Datum Ort
Symposium "The power of faces in first impressions - and beyond" im Rahmen der SGP 2013 11.09.2013 Basel, Schweiz

Kommunikation mit der Öffentlichkeit

Kommunikation Titel Medien Ort Jahr
Medienarbeit: Printmedien, Online-Medien Videointerview "Wie man Gesichter mithilfe von Computern vertrauenswürdiger machen kann" Uni Basel Öffentlichkeitsarbeit Deutschschweiz 2015
Referate/ Veranstaltungen/ Ausstellungen Weltenreise - Vom Gesicht zur Identität Deutschschweiz 2014

Auszeichnungen

Titel Jahr
Young Scientist Award from the Swiss Psychological Society (SSP SGP) 2011

Abstract

People draw personality trait inferences about unfamiliar individuals on the basis of their facial appearance. These inferences are usually inaccurate. Therefore, they are labeled as perceptual illusions, having their origin in face overgeneralization effects (Montepare & Dobisch, 2003; Zebrowitz, Fellous, Mignault, & Andreoletti, 2003) and stereotyping (Hoffman & Hurst, 1990; Montepare & Zebrowitz McArthur, 1998; Sczesny & Kühnen, 2004). How-ever, these inferences affect face memory and predict social behavior in different domains such as hiring decisions, election outcomes, eye-witness testimonies, and criminal sentencing. Surprisingly little is known about the specific physical characteristics underlying these social judgments. Some research has been done on how facial information is related to perceptions of attractiveness and to categorization by age, gender, ethnicity, and emotional states. Recently, first steps have been undertaken to investigate the role of specific facial characteristics underlying per-sonality trait judgments with the help of statistical face models. In one approach different personality trait judg-ments were reduced to the two dimensions explaining most variance in these judgments, namely valence and domi-nance (Oosterhof & Todorov, 2008). Another approach differentiated between different personality trait judgments such as aggressiveness or trustworthiness, and manipulated them separately in photographs of faces (Walker & Vetter, 2009). Both approaches have been successful in modeling personality traits in faces in that a high degree of inter-personal consensus in forming these judgments was achieved. However, there are also inter-individual differ-ences in forming personality trait judgments on the basis of facial appearance. Sources of dissent among judges are, for example, self-resemblance, resemblance of stimulus faces to familiar persons, or judge’s gender, and motives (Zebrowitz, Voinescu, & Collins, 1996). The proposed project aims at investigating how personality trait judgments are formed on the basis of faces from two perspectives: First, we will focus on stimulus characteristics, that is, we will use a newly developed statistical face model to identify the physiognomic correlates of a wide range of personality trait judgments. Second, we will focus on judges’ characteristics and investigate different sources of inter-individual consensus and dissent in the framework of a comprehensive conceptual model. The identification of specific facial characteristics underlying different personality trait judgments will result in an enriched statistical face model. This model is highly flexible and is able to generate fully controlled and natural-looking variations of any individual face, differing only with respect to certain personality traits that are ascribed to the depicted individual. The possibility of manipulating the personality traits ascribed to individuals on the basis of their faces, independent of identity information, allows for addressing many research questions in different fields of psychology for the first time. Moreover, judges’ character-istics, such as their motives or their own physical appearance, will be investigated as sources of inter-individual consensus and dissent in forming personality trait judgments in a direct comparison. Finally, having identified judges’ gender role attitudes as a potential additional source of consensus and dissent for social judgments based on faces, we will therefore investigate their impact on likeability and other trait inferences based on faces signaling gender norm violations.