1 Nature Neuroscience 2012 Vol: 15(7):940-948. DOI: 10.1038/nn.3136

The neuroscience of race

As the racial composition of the population changes, intergroup interactions are increasingly common. To understand how we perceive and categorize race and the attitudes that flow from it, scientists have used brain imaging techniques to examine how social categories of race and ethnicity are processed, evaluated and incorporated in decision-making. We review these findings, focusing on black and white race categories. A network of interacting brain regions is important in the unintentional, implicit expression of racial attitudes and its control. On the basis of the overlap in the neural circuitry of race, emotion and decision-making, we speculate as to how this emerging research might inform how we recognize and respond to variations in race and its influence on unintended race-based attitudes and decisions.

Mentions
Figures
Figure 1: The brain regions most often reported in studies of race. The amygdala has been linked to automatic race evaluations and the FFA is involved in the rapid identification of other race individuals. The ACC is thought to detect conflict between implicit race attitudes and conscious intentions to be nonbiased. When such conflicts are detected, the DLPFC may regulate negative evaluations.
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References
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    • . . . Although this pattern is generally observed, inconsistencies exist, with some studies failing to report an overall effect for black versus white in white American participants11, 18, and others finding that black American participants show either greater amygdala activity to ingroup19 or outgroup faces10 . . .
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    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . Although this pattern is generally observed, inconsistencies exist, with some studies failing to report an overall effect for black versus white in white American participants11, 18, and others finding that black American participants show either greater amygdala activity to ingroup19 or outgroup faces10 . . .
    • . . . Evidence that increased ACC activation in white participants to black faces correlates with their pro-white IAT scores indicates that the stronger the automatic negative response to black, the greater the conflict as reflected in the ACC11 . . .
    • . . . Supraliminal presentation results in greater activation of the ACC, DLPFC and ventral lateral PFC11 . . .
    • . . . Evidence for a role of the DLPFC in the regulation of implicit attitudes comes from a series of studies in which the effect of interracial contact on cognitive control was measured11 . . .
    • . . . Notably, the magnitude of BOLD activity in the ACC and DLPFC when viewing black and white faces correlated with pro-white IAT scores, but only DLPFC activation mediated the relationship between implicit race preference and Stroop interference11 . . .
    • . . . For example, in the initial investigation of the role of the amygdala in the expression of indirect race preferences, a second study used pictures of familiar and admired black and white individuals11 . . .
    • . . . Although ACC activation is usually greater to outgroup race faces11, when participants play a cyberball game with partners of different races, social exclusion by ingroup race partners results in greater ACC activation than social exclusion by outgroup race partners16, presumably reflecting greater conflict and social pain with social exclusion from members of your own race group . . .
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    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . In contrast, none of the explicit measures of race attitudes correlated with amygdala activation9, 12. . . .
    • . . . In the neuroimaging research using face stimuli described above, this initial stage likely involves the amygdala and FFA, both of which show responses to subliminally presented ingroup and outgroup race faces12 (Fig. 1) . . .
    • . . . Consistent with studies of emotion regulation, the DLPFC is likely involved in modulating amygdala activity, resulting in diminished BOLD responses12 . . .
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    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . Similarly, changing task demands to promote focusing on the individual rather than the social group diminished differential amygdala BOLD responses to outgroup versus ingroup faces13 . . .
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    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . For instance, equivalent amygdala activation to light- and dark-skinned faces labeled as black has been observed, suggesting that differential amygdala BOLD responses to black and white faces cannot be attributed to color or contrast differences14 . . .
    • . . . This activation difference correlates with the memory advantage for same-race faces (see refs. 14,57 for similar findings in the N170, but also see refs. 58,59), suggesting that outgroup or unfamiliar faces may not be 'faces' with the same intensity as ingroup or familiar faces60 . . .
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    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
  16. Krill, A.L.; Platek, S.M. In-group and out-group membership mediates anterior cingulate activation to social exclusion Front. Evol. Neurosci. 1, 1 (2009) .
    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . Although ACC activation is usually greater to outgroup race faces11, when participants play a cyberball game with partners of different races, social exclusion by ingroup race partners results in greater ACC activation than social exclusion by outgroup race partners16, presumably reflecting greater conflict and social pain with social exclusion from members of your own race group . . .
  17. Forbes, C.E.; Cox, C.L.; Schmader, T.; Ryan, L. Negative stereotype activation alters interaction between neural correlates of arousal, inhibition and cognitive control Soc. Cogn. Affect. Neurosci. , .
    • . . . Consistent with the emotional salience of race in American culture and, increasingly, elsewhere, a number of studies have found greater amygdala BOLD activity to outgroup race faces (that is, faces judged as belonging to a race group different from oneself) than to ingroup faces9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 . . .
    • . . . For example, presenting individuals with music primes associated with race categories (rap, heavy metal or no music) reveals that priming with rap music increases DLPFC and amygdala activation to black versus white faces in white American participants internally motivated to be nonprejudiced17 . . .
  18. Phelps, E.A. Performance on indirect measures of race evaluation predicts amygdala activation J. Cogn. Neurosci. 12, 729-738 (2000) .
    • . . . Although this pattern is generally observed, inconsistencies exist, with some studies failing to report an overall effect for black versus white in white American participants11, 18, and others finding that black American participants show either greater amygdala activity to ingroup19 or outgroup faces10 . . .
    • . . . In an initial demonstration of this relationship, participants were asked to view pictures of black and white faces while BOLD responses were measured and implicit and explicit assessments of race attitudes were conducted18 . . .
    • . . . In addition, the variability in amygdala activation across white American participants9, 18, as well as inconsistent reports of amygdala activation to ingroup versus outgroup races among black participants10, 19, is indicative of variability in implicit attitudes . . .
    • . . . The amygdala appears to be involved in the detection of race stimuli and its evaluation as expressed with the IAT and physiological responses18 . . .
  19. Lieberman, M.D.; Hariri, A.; Jarcho, J.M.; Eisenberger, N.I.; Bookheimer, S.Y. An fMRI investigation of race-related amygdala activity in African-American and Caucasian-American individuals Nat. Neurosci. 8, 720-722 (2005) .
    • . . . Although this pattern is generally observed, inconsistencies exist, with some studies failing to report an overall effect for black versus white in white American participants11, 18, and others finding that black American participants show either greater amygdala activity to ingroup19 or outgroup faces10 . . .
    • . . . In addition, the variability in amygdala activation across white American participants9, 18, as well as inconsistent reports of amygdala activation to ingroup versus outgroup races among black participants10, 19, is indicative of variability in implicit attitudes . . .
    • . . . What the reviewed studies have in common is that they investigated responses to ingroup and outgroup faces rather than to alternative, verbal representations of racial groups19 . . .
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    • . . . Among the more widely used measures of implicit social cognition is the implicit association test22 (IAT), which measures the strength of association between concepts, such as white and black, and attributes, such as good and bad . . .
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    • . . . Specifically, for white Americans, even when weak or no race preference is apparent on explicit, self-report measures, substantial levels of preference for positive stereotypes of white rather than black are observed on the IAT23 . . .
    • . . . For black Americans, the pattern is more complex, with 40% of black Americans showing a pro-white preference on the IAT, 40% showing pro-black attitudes and 20% neutral with regard to race23 . . .
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    • . . . This variability in race attitudes across and within race groups is thought to reflect cultural and social learning of race attitudes and stereotypes24, 25, 26 . . .
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    • . . . This variability in race attitudes across and within race groups is thought to reflect cultural and social learning of race attitudes and stereotypes24, 25, 26 . . .
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    • . . . This variability in race attitudes across and within race groups is thought to reflect cultural and social learning of race attitudes and stereotypes24, 25, 26 . . .
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    • . . . Notably, implicit attitudes show predicative validity; the magnitude of preference exhibited on the test predicts a host of discriminative behaviors, from nonverbal avoidance to evaluating an individual's work27. . . .
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    • . . . This dissociation between the explicit reporting of race attitudes and implicit race preference as assessed with the IAT mirrors an early finding from research in patients with amygdala damage who demonstrate disruption of the indirect, physiological expression of fear memories, leaving the explicit knowledge of these memories intact28, 29 . . .
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    • . . . This dissociation between the explicit reporting of race attitudes and implicit race preference as assessed with the IAT mirrors an early finding from research in patients with amygdala damage who demonstrate disruption of the indirect, physiological expression of fear memories, leaving the explicit knowledge of these memories intact28, 29 . . .
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    • . . . Although this study did not find an overall BOLD signal difference between black and white faces in white American participants, this BOLD difference correlated with two implicit measures of pro-white race preference across participants: the IAT and eyeblink startle to black versus white faces, a physiological assessment of negative affect to outgroup versus ingroup faces30 . . .
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    • . . . Notably, even though amygdala activation consistently correlates with implicit race preference measures, damage to the amygdala only impairs performance on physiological measures of implicit preference, leaving performance on the IAT intact32 . . .
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    • . . . To address the dissociation between explicit and implicit attitudes, researchers assessed the magnitude of the ERN in participants that varied in their desire and motivations to be free of prejudice39 . . .
    • . . . Individuals that were internally motivated by their own standards to be nonprejudiced showed larger ERN responses during stereotype incongruent errors than individuals that required external motivation to be nonprejudiced, indicating that increased internal motivation to respond without prejudice may amplify cognitive conflict mechanisms39, 42 . . .
    • . . . Individual variability in these higher order goals appears to be reflected in indicators of ACC activity39 . . .
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    • . . . Previous research has shown that some individuals may be more internally motivated to control racial attitudes as a chronic tendency, but others need external motivation, such as equality norms, to implement cognitive control efforts40, 41 . . .
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    • . . . Previous research has shown that some individuals may be more internally motivated to control racial attitudes as a chronic tendency, but others need external motivation, such as equality norms, to implement cognitive control efforts40, 41 . . .
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    • . . . Individuals that were internally motivated by their own standards to be nonprejudiced showed larger ERN responses during stereotype incongruent errors than individuals that required external motivation to be nonprejudiced, indicating that increased internal motivation to respond without prejudice may amplify cognitive conflict mechanisms39, 42 . . .
    • . . . These findings and others suggest the detection of conflict, as expressed in BOLD responses in the ACC and ERN, is a first step in engaging regulatory mechanisms to control the expression of implicit race attitudes, even when individuals are not explicitly instructed to do so42, 43, 44. . . .
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    • . . . These findings and others suggest the detection of conflict, as expressed in BOLD responses in the ACC and ERN, is a first step in engaging regulatory mechanisms to control the expression of implicit race attitudes, even when individuals are not explicitly instructed to do so42, 43, 44. . . .
  44. Beer, J.S. The quadruple process model approach to examining the neural underpinnings of prejudice Neuroimage 43, 775-783 (2008) .
    • . . . These findings and others suggest the detection of conflict, as expressed in BOLD responses in the ACC and ERN, is a first step in engaging regulatory mechanisms to control the expression of implicit race attitudes, even when individuals are not explicitly instructed to do so42, 43, 44. . . .
  45. Curtis, C.E.; D'Esposito, M. Persistent activity in the prefrontal cortex during working memory Trends Cogn. Neurosci. 7, 415-423 (2003) .
    • . . . The DLPFC is a region that has been shown across a range of cognitive tasks to be involved in top-down executive control45 . . .
    • . . . For instance, in working memory, it was proposed that the DLPFC is involved in the top-down control of sensory and motor representations necessary for performance on the task45 . . .
  46. Hartley, C.A.; Phelps, E.A. Changing fear: the neurocircuitry of emotion regulation Neuropsychopharmacology 35, 136-146 (2010) .
    • . . . Affective neuroscientists believe that the DLPFC is important in the cognitive regulation of emotion, modulating responses in the amygdala and striatum, most likely indirectly through its connectivity with the ventral medial PFC46 . . .
  47. MacDonald, A.W.; Cohen, J.D.; Stenger, V.A.; Carter, C.S. Dissociating the role of the dorsolateral prefrontal and anterior cingulate cortex in cognitive control Science 288, 1835-1838 (2000) .
    • . . . Thus, the ACC is involved in performance monitoring, whereas the DLPFC is involved in implementing control47 . . .
  48. Stanley, D.; Phelps, E.A.; Banaji, M.R. The neural basis of implicit attitudes Perspect. Psychol. Sci. 17, 164-170 (2008) .
    • . . . Studies of race processing posit that the DLPFC works in concert with the ACC, with the ACC detecting a conflict between conscious intentions and implicit attitudes and the DLPFC engaging a regulatory mechanism to control unwanted, implicit racial associations48. . . .
  49. Richeson, J.A.; Trawalter, S.; Shelton, J.N. African Americans' implicit racial attitudes and the depletion of executive function after interracial interactions Soc. Cogn. 23, 336-352 (2005) .
    • . . . White American participants with more negative implicit race attitudes performed worse on a Stroop test after interracial interactions than after same-race interactions49, 50 . . .
  50. Richeson, J.A.; Shelton, J.N. When prejudice does not pay: effects of interracial contact on executive function Psychol. Sci. 14, 287-290 (2003) .
    • . . . White American participants with more negative implicit race attitudes performed worse on a Stroop test after interracial interactions than after same-race interactions49, 50 . . .
  51. Kanwisher, N.; McDermott, J.; Chun, M.M. The fusiform face area: a module in human extrastriate cortex specialized for the perception of faces J. Neurosci. 17, 4302-4311 (1997) .
    • . . . Research on face recognition, such as distinguishing between faces and non-faces, and between familiar faces and unfamiliar or new faces, implicates the FFA51, 52 . . .
  52. Rossion, B.; Schiltz, C.; Crommelinck, M. The functionally defined right occipital and fusiform face areas discriminate novel from visually familiar face Neuroimage 19, 877-883 (2003) .
    • . . . Research on face recognition, such as distinguishing between faces and non-faces, and between familiar faces and unfamiliar or new faces, implicates the FFA51, 52 . . .
    • . . . This distinction is apparent in patients with damage to the fusiform gyrus who typically have difficultly differentiating between faces, but can readily distinguish faces from objects52, 53 . . .
  53. Tranel, D.; Damasio, A.R. Knowledge without awareness: an autonomic index of facial recognition by prosopagnosics Science 228, 1453-1454 (1985) .
    • . . . This distinction is apparent in patients with damage to the fusiform gyrus who typically have difficultly differentiating between faces, but can readily distinguish faces from objects52, 53 . . .
  54. Malpass, R.S.; Kravitz, J. Recognition for faces of own and other race J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 13, 330-334 (1969) .
    • . . . Research shows that individuals are faster and more accurate at recognizing faces of ingroup members than outgroup members, often referred to as the other-race, cross-race or same-race effect54, 55. . . .
  55. Brigham, J.C.; Malpass, R.S. The role of experience and contact in the recognition of faces of own- and other-race persons J. Soc. Issues 41, 139-155 (1985) .
    • . . . Research shows that individuals are faster and more accurate at recognizing faces of ingroup members than outgroup members, often referred to as the other-race, cross-race or same-race effect54, 55. . . .
  56. Golby, A.J.; Gabrieli, J.D.E.; Chiao, J.Y.; Eberhardt, J.L. Differential fusiform responses to same- and other-race faces Nat. Neurosci. 4, 845-850 (2001) .
    • . . . Following from the cross-race recognition findings, researchers recorded BOLD activity from black and white participants while they viewed and attempted to remember pictures of unfamiliar black and white faces and objects (for example, radios)56 . . .
  57. Ito, T.A.; Urland, G.R. The influence of processing objectives on the perception of faces: an ERP study of race and gender perception Cogn. Affect. Behav. Neurosci. 5, 21-36 (2005) .
    • . . . This activation difference correlates with the memory advantage for same-race faces (see refs. 14,57 for similar findings in the N170, but also see refs. 58,59), suggesting that outgroup or unfamiliar faces may not be 'faces' with the same intensity as ingroup or familiar faces60 . . .
  58. Caldara, R. Face versus non-face object perception and the “other-race” effect: a spatio-temporal event-related potential study Clin. Neurophysiol. 114, 515-528 (2003) .
    • . . . This activation difference correlates with the memory advantage for same-race faces (see refs. 14,57 for similar findings in the N170, but also see refs. 58,59), suggesting that outgroup or unfamiliar faces may not be 'faces' with the same intensity as ingroup or familiar faces60 . . .
  59. Ito, T.A.; Thompson, E.; Cacioppo, J.T. Tracking the time course of social perception: the effects of racial cues on event-related brain potentials Pers. Soc. Psychol. Bull. 30, 1267-1280 (2004) .
    • . . . This activation difference correlates with the memory advantage for same-race faces (see refs. 14,57 for similar findings in the N170, but also see refs. 58,59), suggesting that outgroup or unfamiliar faces may not be 'faces' with the same intensity as ingroup or familiar faces60 . . .
  60. Brosch, T.; Bar-David, E.; Phelps, E.A. Implicit race bias decreases the similarity of neural representations of black and white faces Psychol. Sci. , .
    • . . . This activation difference correlates with the memory advantage for same-race faces (see refs. 14,57 for similar findings in the N170, but also see refs. 58,59), suggesting that outgroup or unfamiliar faces may not be 'faces' with the same intensity as ingroup or familiar faces60 . . .
    • . . . A recent investigation using multivoxel pattern analysis to determine whether BOLD activation patterns can predict race from face stimuli found successful prediction in the FFA, but only in participants high in implicit pro-white race bias60 . . .
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    • . . . Researchers examining the cross-race effect argue that participants process outgroup members primarily at the category level (race group) at the expense of encoding individuating information because of differences in category expertise or motivated ingroup attention61, 62, 63 . . .
  62. Sangrigoli, S.; Pallier, C.; Argenti, A.M.; Ventureyra, V.A.G. & de Schonen, S. Reversibility of the other-race effect in face recognition during childhood Psychol. Sci. 16, 440-444 (2005) .
    • . . . Researchers examining the cross-race effect argue that participants process outgroup members primarily at the category level (race group) at the expense of encoding individuating information because of differences in category expertise or motivated ingroup attention61, 62, 63 . . .
  63. Young, S.G.; Hugenberg, K. Individuation motivation and face experience can operate jointly to produce the own-race bias Soc. Psychol. Personal. Sci. 3, 80-87 (2012) .
    • . . . Researchers examining the cross-race effect argue that participants process outgroup members primarily at the category level (race group) at the expense of encoding individuating information because of differences in category expertise or motivated ingroup attention61, 62, 63 . . .
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    • . . . In the social psychological literature on race, a hierarchical control model has been proposed in which higher order personal and societal motivations influence other, lower order aspects of person construal, such as the application of category-based evaluations derived from race64 . . .
  65. Vuilleumier, P.; Pourtois, G. Distributed and interactive brain mechanisms during emotion face perception: evidence from functional neuroimaging Neuropsychologia 45, 174-194 (2007) .
    • . . . Although there is evidence of connectivity between the amygdala and FFA in the processing of fear faces, such that increased activation of the FFA to fear versus neutral faces is abolished with amygdala damage65, it is unknown how this connectivity may influence responses to faces that vary by race. . . .
  66. Delgado, M.R.; Nearing, K.I.; LeDoux, J.E.; Phelps, E.A. Neural circuitry underlying the regulation of conditioned fear and its relation to extinction Neuron 59, 829-838 (2008) .
    • . . . This emotion regulation circuitry, in which the DLPFC exerts some control over the amygdala, perhaps through its connectivity with more ventral PFC regions66, results in diminished emotional or evaluative responses in affect tasks . . .
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    • . . . The initial assessment was a grim future for intergroup relations67, 68, 69 . . .
  68. Devine, P.G.; Monteith, M.J. Automaticity and control in stereotyping Dual-Process Theories in Social Psychology , 339-360 (1999) .
    • . . . The initial assessment was a grim future for intergroup relations67, 68, 69 . . .
  69. Fiske, S. Examining the role of intent: toward understanding its role in stereotyping and prejudice Unintended Thought: The Limits of Awareness, Intention, and Control , 253-283 (1989) .
    • . . . The initial assessment was a grim future for intergroup relations67, 68, 69 . . .
  70. Blair, I.V. The malleability of automatic stereotypes and prejudice Pers. Soc. Psychol. Rev. 6, 242-261 (2002) .
    • . . . However, emerging research demonstrates that race-based preferences, even those that are automatic, seem to be malleable and dependent on both situational and dispositional factors70, 71 . . .
  71. Dasgupta, N. Mechanisms underlying the malleability of implicit prejudice and stereotypes: the role of automaticity and cognitive control Handbook of Stereotyping, Prejudice, and Discrimination , 267-284 (2009) .
    • . . . However, emerging research demonstrates that race-based preferences, even those that are automatic, seem to be malleable and dependent on both situational and dispositional factors70, 71 . . .
  72. Van Bavel, J.J.; Packer, D.J.; Cunningham, W.A. The neural substrates of in-group bias: a functional magnetic resonance imaging investigation Psychol. Sci. 19, 1131-1139 (2008) .
    • . . . The studies report heightened activity in the FFA to faces of arbitrarily assigned ingroup members compared with outgroup members, regardless of race72, 73 . . .
  73. Van Bavel, J.J.; Cunningham, W.A. Self-categorization with a novel mixed-race group moderates automatic social and racial biases Pers. Soc. Psychol. Bull. 35, 321-335 (2009) .
    • . . . The studies report heightened activity in the FFA to faces of arbitrarily assigned ingroup members compared with outgroup members, regardless of race72, 73 . . .
  74. Phelps, E.A. Faces and races in the brain Nat. Neurosci. 4, 775-776 (2001) .
    • . . . These results suggest that expertise with ingroup race exemplars per se may not lead to altered FFA responses74, but rather that the salient social group identity in the situation, which may or may not be race, could dictate lowered attention to outgroup members at the expense of encoding individuating features. . . .
  75. Glimcher, P.W.; Fehr, E.; Rangel, A.; Camerer, C.; Poldrack, R.A. Neuroeconomics , (2009) .
    • . . . For example, neuroeconomics provides a framework for understanding human decisions by combining classic behavioral economic tasks, quantitative tools and human neuroscience techniques75 . . .
    • . . . Much like perceptual psychophysicists, neuroeconomists and decision scientists increasingly use mathematical models to both precisely characterize individual differences in decision variables, as well as to differentiate components of updating value representations75 . . .
  76. LeDoux, J.E.; Gorman, J.M. A call to action: overcoming anxiety through active coping Am. J. Psychiatry 158, 1953-1955 (2001) .
    • . . . For instance, the amygdala is involved when emotion affects actions and values through its connectivity with the striatum76 and ventral medial PFC77 . . .
  77. De Martino, B.; Kumaran, D.; Seymour, B.; Dolan, R.J. Frames, biases, and rational decision-making in the human brain Science 313, 684-687 (2006) .
    • . . . For instance, the amygdala is involved when emotion affects actions and values through its connectivity with the striatum76 and ventral medial PFC77 . . .
  78. Todorov, A.; Duchaine, B. Reading trustworthiness in faces without recognizing faces Cogn. Neuropsychol. 25, 395-410 (2008) .
    • . . . The amygdala is linked to judgments of trust78, as well as to implicit race preference . . .
  79. Stanley, D.A.; Sokol-Hessner, P.; Banaji, M.R.; Phelps, E.A. Implicit race attitudes predict trustworthiness judgments and economic trust decisions Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 108, 7710-7715 (2011) .
    • . . . This overlap inspired a recent investigation of implicit preferences on decisions in a behavioral economics trust game79 . . .
  80. Delgado, M.R.; Jou, R.L.; LeDoux, J.E.; Phelps, E.A. Avoiding negative outcomes: tracking the mechanisms of avoidance learning in humans during fear conditioning Front. Behav. Neurosci. 3, 33 (2009) .
    • . . . These findings are consistent with a model in which the amygdala codes evaluative information that is integrated with action values via its connectivity with the striatum80. . . .
  81. Olsson, A.; Ebert, J.P.; Banaji, M.R.; Phelps, E.A. The role of social groups in the persistence of learned fear Science 309, 785-787 (2005) .
    • . . . Given that race influences both decisions and affective learning about others81, incorporating the quantitative tools of decision science may provide a more nuanced understanding of the effect of racial group on behavior and brain function. . . .
  82. Lane, K.A.; Kang, J.; Banaji, M.R. Implicit social cognition and law Annu. Rev. Law. Soc. Sci. 3, 427-451 (2007) .
    • . . . For example, there is strong evidence that race attitudes influence legal decisions, often unintentionally82 . . .
  83. Korn, H.A.; Johnson, M.A.; Chun, M.M. Neurolaw: differential brain activity for black and white faces predicts damage awards in hypothetical employment discrimination cases Soc. Neuro. 7, 398-409 (2012) .
    • . . . Increased activation of the DLPFC and parietal cortex correlate with damages awarded, implying a larger network of regions involved in producing discriminative behaviors83 . . .
  84. Correll, J.; Urland, G.R.; Ito, T.A. Event-related potentials and the decision to shoot: the role of threat perception and cognitive control J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 42, 120-128 (2006) .
    • . . . There is also a growing literature examining electrophysiological correlates of racially biased decisions to shoot in potential crime scenes2, 84, exploring how race influences this exceptionally consequential domain. . . .
  85. Green, A.R. Implicit bias among physicians and its prediction of thrombolysis decisions for black and white patients J. Gen. Intern. Med. 22, 1231-1238 (2007) .
    • . . . In addition to economic and legal decisions, unintended race bias influences hiring decisions and medical decisions85, 86, 87, 88 . . .
  86. Sabin, J.; Nosek, B.A.; Greenwald, A.G.; Rivara, F.P. Physicians' implicit and explicit attitudes about race by MD race, ethnicity, and gender J. Health Care Poor Underserved 20, 896-913 (2009) .
    • . . . In addition to economic and legal decisions, unintended race bias influences hiring decisions and medical decisions85, 86, 87, 88 . . .
  87. Snipes, S.A. Is race medically relevant? A qualitative study of physicians' attitudes about the role of race in treatment decision-making BMC Health Serv. Res. 11, 183 (2011) .
    • . . . In addition to economic and legal decisions, unintended race bias influences hiring decisions and medical decisions85, 86, 87, 88 . . .
  88. Rooth, D.-O. Automatic associations and discrimination in hiring: real world evidence Labour Econ. 17, 523-534 (2010) .
    • . . . In addition to economic and legal decisions, unintended race bias influences hiring decisions and medical decisions85, 86, 87, 88 . . .
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    • . . . This can be done by changing one's perspective or goals when encountering a stimulus or, more explicitly, by instructing participants to interpret the stimulus in a way that alters their emotional reaction89. . . .
  90. Stewart, B.D.; Payne, B.K. Bringing automatic stereotyping under control: implementation intentions as efficient means of thought control Pers. Soc. Psychol. Bull. 34, 1332-1345 (2008) .
    • . . . Social psychologists already utilize techniques reminiscent of reappraisal that aim to decrease negative evaluations of outgroup members90, 91, 92 . . .
  91. Gollwitzer, P.M.; Brandstaetter, V. Implementation intentions and effective goal pursuit J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 73, 186-199 (1997) .
    • . . . Social psychologists already utilize techniques reminiscent of reappraisal that aim to decrease negative evaluations of outgroup members90, 91, 92 . . .
  92. Galinsky, A.D.; Moskowitz, G.B. Perspective-taking: decreasing stereotype expression, stereotype accessibility, and in-group favoritism J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 78, 708-724 (2000) .
    • . . . Social psychologists already utilize techniques reminiscent of reappraisal that aim to decrease negative evaluations of outgroup members90, 91, 92 . . .
  93. Sokol-Hessner, P. Thinking like a trader selectively reduces individuals' loss aversion Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 106, 5035-5040 (2009) .
    • . . . Recent neuroeconomic research suggests that a perspective-shifting instruction designed to encourage reappraisal alters the emotional effect of choice outcomes and changes decisions93, which appears to utilize an emotion regulation circuitry94 . . .
  94. Sokol-Hessner, P.; Camerer, C.; Phelps, E.A. Emotion regulation reduces loss aversion and decreases amygdala responses to losses Soc. Cogn. Affect. Neurosci. , .
    • . . . Recent neuroeconomic research suggests that a perspective-shifting instruction designed to encourage reappraisal alters the emotional effect of choice outcomes and changes decisions93, which appears to utilize an emotion regulation circuitry94 . . .
  95. Rudman, L.A.; Ashmore, R.D.; Gary, M.L. “Unlearning” automatic biases: the malleability of implicit prejudice and stereotypes J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 81, 856-868 (2001) .
    • . . . In some ways, diversity training protocols shown to affect implicit attitudes may be analogous95 . . .
  96. Payne, B.K. Conceptualizing control in social cognition: how executive functioning modulates the expression of automatic stereotyping J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 89, 488-503 (2005) .
    • . . . Behavioral research has shown that, although increasing cognitive control through manipulations decreases race preference, the original negative associations with the racial group remain intact96 . . .
  97. Nader, K.; Schafe, G.E.; Le Doux, J.E. Fear memories require protein synthesis in the amygdala for reconsolidation after retrieval Nature 406, 722-726 (2000) .
    • . . . Studies on reconsolidation have shown that every time a memory is retrieved it undergoes a re-storage or reconsolidation process97 . . .
  98. Schiller, D.; Phelps, E.A. Does reconsolidation occur in humans? Front. Behav. Neurosci. 5, 24 (2011) .
    • . . . Recent research reveals that by precisely timing the presentation of interfering information to occur during the reconsolidation period, the original memory or association may be persistently changed, with one consequence being an altered emotional response98 . . .
  99. Mathur, V.A.; Harada, T.; Lipke, T.; Chiao, J.Y. Neural basis of extraordinary empathy and altruistic motivation Neuroimage 51, 1468-1475 (2010) .
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