Envy is an unpleasant emotion caused by comparison with a person who possesses something we desire. We conducted two studies to test our prediction that less envy would be felt when the person could attain what others had. In Study 1, participants read scenarios in which their friend could achieve a goal which they could not, and rated their emotions toward the friend. We manipulated the attainability according to whether the goal could be achieved by effort. In Study 2, participants competed with a confederate, and were informed that their performance was worse than that of the confederate. Afterwards the attainability was manipulated by either informing the participants that the possibility of improving their ability was very low or high. Then participants rated their emotions toward the confederate, and we also checked whether the participants had helped the confederate. As predicted, our findings demonstrated that those in the high attainability condition felt envy less than those in the low attainability condition, but showed no significant differences in helping behavior.
This research demonstrated the negative influence of monitoring and punishing during a social dilemma game, taking the illegal dumping of industrial waste as an example. The first study manipulated three conditions: a producing-industries monitoring condition (PIM), an administrative monitoring condition (ADM), and a control condition (no monitoring). The results showed that non-cooperative behavior was more frequent in the PIM condition than in the control condition. The second study had three conditions: a punishing condition (PC), a monitoring condition (MC), and a control condition (no monitoring, no punishing). The results indicated that non-cooperative behavior was observed the most in the PC, and the least in the control condition. Furthermore, information regarding other players’ costs and benefits was shared the most in the control conditions in both studies. The results suggest that sanctions prevent people from sharing information, which decreases expectations of mutual cooperation.
To evaluate the effectiveness of the new victim participation systems, we examined whether the use of these systems had an effect on the confidence of the families of victims about the criminal justice system. The results of a questionnaire survey revealed that victims who participated in their criminal court cases had more confidence in the criminal justice system and were more accepting of the court decisions. Moreover, the present study examined the process of victims’ confidence in criminal justice based on the value-expressive theory of procedural justice. In particular, the assumption was confirmed that the victims’ feelings of expressing opinions resulted in their increased confidence in criminal justice through their confidence in the judges and their acceptance of court decisions.
The present study examined cognitive vulnerability to relapses of depression by clarifying the characteristics of “cognitive reactivity” in people with recurrent major depressive episodes. Study 1-1 and 1-2 developed a Japanese version of the Leiden Index of Depression Sensitivity-Revised (LEIDS-R), which assessed cognitive reactivity, and evaluated the reliability and validity of the scale. Study 2 examined the characteristics of cognitive reactivity which differentiate people with recurrent major depressive episodes from people with a single episode or none. The Japanese version of the LEIDS-R was shown to have reasonable reliability and validity. Participants with recurrent major depressive episodes showed more repetitive thoughts about negative issues and avoidance from internal and external aversive events when depressive mood was induced, compared to participants with only a single episode of depression. These results suggest that the characteristics of cognitive reactivity are important considerations for preventing relapse of depression.
This study investigated how participants would reject an initial rule when they faced positive and negative instances of an initial rule. Using eye movement data, we analyzed a perspective that indicated the type of rules that participants consider. Our experiments yielded the following results. A tendency to consider rules from the perspective that participants used for finding and confirming the initial rule was retained in the phase in which both positive and negative instances of the initial rule were given. This tendency was observed only when participants faced negative instances. We concluded that, when participants faced negative instances, they tried to change the initial rule peripherally to explain them.
A Japanese version of the Self-Compassion Scale (SCS-J) was developed. In Survey 1, confirmatory factor analysis of data from participants indicated that the SCS-J had an acceptable fit to the model, as well as good internal consistency, similar to the original. In Survey 2, a test–retest correlation of the SCS-J for 101 participants indicated good reliability for the scale. In Survey 3, 148 participants completed the SCS-J and the Narcissistic Personality Inventory, the Subjective Happiness Scale, the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory-Trait form, and the Beck Depression Inventory. The partial correlations between the SCS-J and the other scales were analyzed, using self-esteem, or self-criticism as the control variables. The results demonstrated that self-compassion was associated with self-esteem and the mental health of the Japanese participants. These results indicate that the SCS-J has good reliability and validity as a measure of self-compassion.
The Operation Span Test (OSPAN) is widely used to assess working memory capacity. However, this instrument has been rarely used to test Japanese participants because its task was not sufficiently difficult. The mean score for the original computerized OSPAN often reached a ceiling when Japanese participants were tested. In this study, we developed a computerized version of OSPAN for Japanese participants by increasing the task difficulty of the arithmetic procedures. The OSPAN scores were normally distributed and the mean score was approximately 50%. There were positive correlations between OSPAN scores and other scores of working memory measurements, such as a reading span test and a digit span test. These results suggest that the Japanese OSPAN is a reliable and valid measurement of working memory to test Japanese participants.
Hedonia (seeking pleasure and relaxation) and eudaimonia (seeking to improve oneself in congruence with one’s values) uniquely contribute to well-being. The authors developed and tested the construct validity of a Japanese version of the Hedonic and Eudaimonic Motives for Activities (HEMA) scale that had been originally developed in North America. Drawing on the theoretical and empirical evidence from research on emotion, we proposed that people would pursue well-being in three different directions: pleasure, relaxation, and eudaimonia. In Study 1, we used the original HEMA scale to examine the Japanese attainment of well-being. The results supported the hypothesized three-factor model. Study 2 revealed that the Japanese version of the HEMA scale measured pleasure, relaxation, and eudaimonia. Each of these subscales showed statistically sufficient internal consistency. There was no gender difference in any of these measures. Scores on the scale systematically corresponded with external criterion variables, such as life satisfaction, affect, Ryff’s psychological well-being, social support, and lifestyle. Implications for psychological research and public policies that cover the topic of the pursuit of well-being are discussed.
This study investigated the hypothesis that narcissistic personality traits would affect risk-taking behaviors through self-monitoring. The Narcissistic Personality Inventory Short Version (NPI-S), the Self-monitoring Scale (SM), and the Risk-taking Behavior Scale for Undergraduates (RIBS-U) were administered to 192 university and graduate students. There were three NPI-S factors (“sense of superiority and competence”, “need for attention and praise”, and “self-assertion”), two SM factors (“extraversion” and “other-directedness”), and the single risk-taking factor of the RIBS-U. Covariance structure analysis was then conducted to test whether narcissistic personality traits would affect risk-taking behaviors through self-monitoring. Analysis showed that the factors of “sense of superiority and competence” and “need for attention and praise” affected risk-taking behavior through the “other-directedness” factor. However, the “self-assertion” factor was found to have a direct effect on risk-taking behavior.
This study investigated the effect of interpersonal dependency on judgments of gaze direction of individuals with different facial expressions. Based on interpersonal dependency scores, 46 participants were divided into two groups (high interpersonal dependency and low interpersonal dependency). Participants judged the gaze direction of photographs of faces with angry, neutral or happy expressions. Relative to the low interpersonal dependency group, the high interpersonal dependency group was more accurate in the judgments of gaze direction. This tendency was more salient for the happy and neutral expressions than for the angry expressions. Since people with high interpersonal dependency are highly motivated to seek support from others, this result suggests that they are sensitive to signals with pro-social information such as the gaze direction of others with positive attitudes.
The present study focused on the discrepancy between explicit self-esteem and implicit self-esteem, using the Name Letter Task with 86 graduate students. In line with suggestions from previous research, participants high in explicit self-esteem but low implicit self-esteem (called “defensive high self-esteem”) showed higher in-group favoritism than participants who had high explicit and implicit self-esteem (called “secure high self-esteem”). Participants with defensive self-esteem reported higher levels of depression than secure self-esteem participants. These results strengthen the generalizability for the conceptualizations of “defensive” and “secure” high self-esteem. However, participants with low self-esteem did not show significant interactions with any variables.
The strong reciprocity model of human cooperation (SRM) argues that strong reciprocators, who cooperate with others and punish non-cooperators, sustain within-group cooperation. However, the assumption that altruism and punishment are products of the same psychological mechanism of strong reciprocity has not been fully verified. Second-party punishment, for example as measured through rejection of unfair offers in the ultimatum game, has been demonstrated to have no relationship with cooperation in the prisoner’s dilemma and other games. In this study, we tested the assumption of the SRM by comparing the participants’ levels of cooperation in the prisoner’s dilemma game and their inclination for punishment in a third-party punishment game. Non-student recruited from the general population (N = 182) participated in the study. The results show a weak but positive correlation between cooperation and third-party punishment, which is consistent with the SRM model.