Operations, Information and Decisions Papers

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

4-2013

Publication Source

Journal of Consumer Psychology

Volume

23

Issue

2

Start Page

212

Last Page

219

DOI

10.1016/j.jcps.2012.06.001

Abstract

Alcohol consumption and cognitive impairment frequently co-occur. We propose that the relationship is so familiar that exposure to alcohol cues primes expectations of cognitive impairment. Across five studies, we find that in the absence of any evidence of reduced cognitive performance, people who hold an alcoholic beverage are perceived to be less intelligent than those who do not, a mistake we term the imbibing idiot bias. In fact, merely priming observers with alcohol cues causes them to judge targets who hold no beverage at all as less intelligent. The bias is not driven by a belief that less intelligent people are more likely to consume alcohol. We find that the bias may be costly in professional settings. Job candidates who ordered wine during an interview held over dinner were viewed as less intelligent and less hireable than candidates who ordered soda. However, prospective candidates believe that ordering wine rather than soda will help them appear more intelligent.

Copyright/Permission Statement

© . This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Keywords

Impression formation, impression management, conceptual consumption, person perception, alcohol

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Date Posted: 27 November 2017

This document has been peer reviewed.