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Intellectual Humility is Reliably Associated with Constructive Responses to Conflict

Jonah Koetke, MS, Karina Schumann, PhD, Keith Welker, PhD, Peter Coleman, PhD|January 9, 2023

Conflict is a ubiquitous, but potentially destructive, feature of social life. In the current
research, we argue that intellectual humility—the awareness of one’s intellectual fallibility—plays an important role in promoting constructive responses to conflict. In Studies 1a and 1b, we focus on ideological intergroup conflict and provide a large-scale replication of intellectual humility as a mitigator of affective polarization. In Studies 2a and 2b, we examine the role of intellectual humility in interpersonal conflicts with friends, family members, and work colleagues. Across all studies (N = 23,869), we find that intellectual humility predicts constructive conflict responses.

Ideological Conflict; Affective Polarization; Intellectual Humility; Conflict Resolution


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