Impact of power conceptualization and construal-level mindset on distributive fairness

Na Wang1, Yue-Liang Sun2, Pei-Lin Li2
1School of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, and Department of Education, Zhejiang University and Hanshan Normal University, People’s Republic of China
2Department of Education, Hanshan Normal University, People’s Republic of China
Cite this article:  Wang, N., Sun, Y.-L., & Li, P.-L. (2015). Impact of power conceptualization and construal-level mindset on distributive fairness. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 43(8), 1361-1370.

Volume 43 Issue 8 | e4776 | Published: September 2015 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2015.43.8.1361–1370

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We investigated the influence of power conceptualization (influence/responsibility) on distributive fairness and the role of construal-level mindset in this cause–effect relationship. Participants in our study were 80 adults at a continental education school in China. The results showed that power that is conceptualized as responsibility represents a higher level of abstraction of construal and leads to a fairer distribution of resources than when it is conceptualized as influence. Moreover, we found that a construal-level mindset mediated the effects of power on distributive fairness. Theoretical and practical implications of the influence of power conceptualization and the role of construal-level mindset in power and fair behavior are discussed.

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