Complementary stereotyping of ethnic minorities predicts system justification in Poland

Aleksandra Cichocka, Mikołaj Winiewski, Michał Bilewicz, Marcin Bukowski, John T. Jost

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We investigate the phenomenon of complementary stereotyping of ethnic minorities in Poland and its relationship to system justification. Using results from a nationally representative survey we test the hypothesis that complementary stereotypes—according to which ethnic minorities are seen as possessing distinctive, offsetting strengths and weaknesses—would be associated with system justification among Polish majority citizens. For four minorities, results indicated that stereotyping them as (a) low in morality but high in competence or (b) high in morality but low in competence predicted greater system justification. These results suggest that even in a context that is low in support for the status quo, complementary stereotyping of ethnic minorities is linked to system justification processes. For the three minority groups that were lowest in social status, complementary stereotyping was unrelated to system justification. It appears that negative attitude towards these groups can be expressed openly, regardless of one’s degree of system justification.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)788-800
Number of pages13
JournalGroup Processes and Intergroup Relations
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 29 2015


  • competence
  • complementary stereotypes
  • ethnic minorities
  • system justification
  • warmth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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