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CUDISC - „Cultural Diversity of Social Cognition“

The capacity to process socially relevant information is an essential component of our cognitive equipment that allows us to communicate and interact with others and to adapt to complex affordances created by our social environment.

However, the enormous variations of social behavior and diversity in human communication often enough challenge our capacity to understand others and can lead to misunderstandings in social encounters.

Diversity in social cognition is caused by a manifold of biological, psychological and contextual factors and poses a challenge for mutual understanding across individuals and groups. This holds true for encounters between cultures as well as for our understanding of norm variations within cultures. Furthermore, the psychological processes and neural mechanisms underlying the variance of social information processing and its implications for human encounters are not fully understood.

It is the goal of the CUDISC forum to generate an international and interdisciplinary platform that will develop a conceptually coherent and empirically grounded framework, which would allow the systematic study of causes and effects of variance on social cognition.

CUDISC will aim at an integrative model of human social cognition covering the conditions of diversity, its psychological and biological constituents as well as its social implications and potentials including a theoretical perspective (e.g. universality versus diversity) and empirical questions (e.g. levels of information processing: differential influences of non-propositional versus propositional formats).


Prof. Dr. André Kaiser (Cologne Center for Comparative Politics)