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Science. 2016 Apr 8;352(6282):220-4. doi: 10.1126/science.aad9713.

Durably reducing transphobia: A field experiment on door-to-door canvassing.

Author information

1
Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA. dbroockman@stanford.edu.
2
Department of Political Science, University of California, Berkeley, CA, USA.

Abstract

Existing research depicts intergroup prejudices as deeply ingrained, requiring intense intervention to lastingly reduce. Here, we show that a single approximately 10-minute conversation encouraging actively taking the perspective of others can markedly reduce prejudice for at least 3 months. We illustrate this potential with a door-to-door canvassing intervention in South Florida targeting antitransgender prejudice. Despite declines in homophobia, transphobia remains pervasive. For the intervention, 56 canvassers went door to door encouraging active perspective-taking with 501 voters at voters' doorsteps. A randomized trial found that these conversations substantially reduced transphobia, with decreases greater than Americans' average decrease in homophobia from 1998 to 2012. These effects persisted for 3 months, and both transgender and nontransgender canvassers were effective. The intervention also increased support for a nondiscrimination law, even after exposing voters to counterarguments.

PMID:
27124458
DOI:
10.1126/science.aad9713
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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