Date of Award
Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Psychology and University Honors
reward structure, incivility, motivation, status quo, race, discrimination
In recent years, there has been an uptick in public awareness of systemic and structural inequities within the workplace. Organizational reward structures (i.e., performance-based and seniority-based) act as incentives for employees' contributions toward organizational goals (Bayo-Moriones et al., 2010), but could also motivate employees' drive for gaining or maintaining social status by undermining other employees, particularly targeting people with minority status. The proposed research will study the relationship between reward structures and the perpetration of incivility by accounting for perpetrators' social dominance orientation (SDO), their motivations to protect the status quo (MPSQ), and the presence of minority race targets. We draw from SDO (Sidanius et al., 1992; Ho et al., 2015), status incongruity hypothesis (SIH) (Rudman et al., 2012) and status quo bias (SQB) (Godefroid et al., 2021) to add to the literature on reward structure outcomes, antecedents to incivility, and individual- and organizational-level factors that impact role discrimination (e.g., limitations in career advancement based on one's race). We will collect data by survey and video experiment from 400 working adults recruited online and in person. The SDO-7 (Ho et al., 2015), an adapted measure for MPSQ, and experiment manipulations will be used to measure incivility towards Black and White targets in seniority- versus performance-based conditions. We hypothesize that there will be a relationship between seniority-based reward structures and the perpetration of incivility that is mediated by the MPSQ, where high SDO and the presence of Black targets will increase the likelihood of perpetration.
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Allen, Sam, "Fanning the Embers of Discrimination at Work: Does Reward Structure Fuel Incivility?" (2023). University Honors Theses. Paper 1391.