Miller, I. D., MacInnis, C. C., & Page-Gould, E. (2017). Intergroup Contact Effects Produced by Simulated Intergroup Interactions. In 18th Meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. San Antonio, TX, USA. doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.4960577
There is an apparent contradiction between the intergroup interaction and intergroup contact literature that recent theoretical work has sought to reconcile (MacInnis & Page-Gould, 2015). In the current work, we test those theoretical predictions with an agent based modeling approach that simulates repeated interactions between agents who, over time, become differentially biased on the basis of those interactions. Our simulation specifies simple models of intergroup perception, approach, interaction quality, and memory. A population of agents (n=1,000) wander their simulated world as a random walk during which they may decide to interact with one another. The simulation revealed a pattern consistent with intergroup contact. Despite specifying lower outcomes for intergroup versus within-group interactions, our simulation nevertheless supports the intergroup contact effect in which bias is reduced over repeated interaction.