Effects of person salience versus role salience on reward allocation in a dyad

Elena M. Carles, Charles S Carver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Research has shown that resource allocation in a dyad sometimes follows the principle of equity (proportional reward) and sometimes that of parity (equal reward). However, existing evidence does not clarify the conditions under which each of these rules is invoked. A number of theorists have suggested that salience of the other as a person should lead to parity-based allocation, whereas salience of the other as a functionary filling a role should lead to equity-based allocation. The present study with 60 male and 60 female undergraduates tested these possibilities. Ss were led to perceive their own inputs to group performance as being either substantially lower or substantially higher than a partner's inputs. The partner had been portrayed to the S in terms that made salient the partner's personal characteristics, the partner's role assignment, or neither of these. Among females, subsequent reward allocation followed the predicted pattern in both high- and low-input conditions. Among males, contrary to expectation, person salience led to heightened feelings of competitiveness and to increased allocations to the self. (22 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2071-2080
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Personality and Social Psychology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jan 1 1979
Externally publishedYes


  • person vs role salience, parity vs equity-based reward allocation, college student dyads

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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