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Description: Advances in behavioral and neuroscientific research have the potential to fuel public doubt about the extent to which human behavior is the direct result of the exercise of free will. In two studies, we examined whether observers’ perceptions of fairness of a police-suspect interaction were influenced by the belief in free will. Both studies used a vignette describing an officer's disrespectful treatment of a suspect. Participants rated the fairness of the interaction and the suspect’s deservingness of the treatment. Results revealed that free will belief accounts for some variance in perceptions of fairness of police-suspect interactions. We discuss how these studies are the first step in identifying whether and how advances in behavioral and neuroscientific research may affect perceptions of procedural justice in the legal system.
Stenkamp, A.M., Mark Fondacaro, M. (2022). Free Will Belief and the Impact on Perceptions of Procedural Justice [Electronic Version]. Applied Psychology in Criminal Justice, 16(2), 200-220.
Keywords: free will, procedural justice, policing
Date: Feb 07, 2022