The social neuroscience of intergroup relations

David M. Amodio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The social neuroscience approach integrates theories and methods of social psychology and neuroscience to address questions about social behaviour at multiple levels of analysis. This approach has been especially popular in the domain of intergroup relations, in part because this area of research provides a rich context for connecting basic neurocognitive mechanisms to higher-level interpersonal, group, and societal processes. Here I provide a brief description of the social neuroscience approach, and then review research that has used this approach to advance theories of (a) implicit racial bias and their effects on behaviour, (b) the self-regulation of intergroup responses, and (c) prejudice reduction. I also describe how the social neuroscience perspective suggests some important refinements to theoretical conceptions of implicit bias, prejudice control, and prejudice reduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-54
Number of pages54
JournalEuropean Review of Social Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2008


  • Amygdala
  • Control
  • Dehumanisation
  • Discrimination
  • Implicit bias
  • Intergroup
  • Medial frontal cortex
  • Prejudice
  • Prejudice reduction
  • Self-regulation
  • Social neuroscience
  • Stereotyping

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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