Draining the will for peace or war: Understanding how social influence and self-regulation processes interact in conflict (2010–2012)
Conflict is common, whether between racial, religious, and political groups, or between businesses and firms. Yet conflict frays tempers, wastes time, costs money, and hurts people. Destructive conflict escalation may occur despite rational plans and good intentions. This process is poorly understood. Recently motivation researchers discovered that tasks requiring willpower drain the resources individuals have available for other challenges, a state called ego-depletion . The present research will improve our understanding of how good intentions fail and conflict escalates. It will do so by studying the impact of ego-depletion in decreasing adherence to internalised social rules, or norms, and increasing reactivity to situational cues.