Topic 2: Unconscious Bias

Block of Flats

You are the management committee of a block of flats in the center of Strasbourg. There are 5 apartments available for rent and you have received 10 applications. You need to meet and decide which 5 of the applications below you will accept as the new tenants in your block of flats. You have 20 minutes to reach a consensus. Then you will present your answer in plenary, explaining which applicants you selected and why and which applicants you rejected and why.

  1. A couple from Cannes. The man is 28 years old and is a teacher and the woman is 35 years old and is working on her novel. They have no children.
  2. A couple from England. The man (32 years old) is a salesman and travels often. The woman (28 years old) is a housewife. They have two small children and a dog.
  3. A couple from Sicily with their 6 children and their dog. The man (36 years old) has his own used car company. The woman (34 years old) is a housewife. The children are aged 1-17 years old. They are often visited by random people that look ‘odd’.
  4. Two men who are a couple, 24 years old and 26 years old from New York City. They are both singers.
  5. A woman from Denmark, who is an outspoken feminist. She will live together with a Greek rapper who has a very alternative lifestyle.
  6. A man who has recently lost his wife, a musician, together with his 17-year-old son.
  7. A newly married couple from Strasbourg. One of them is a student at art school (5th year) and other one is a student at theatre school (3rd year). They have a Mercedes.
  8. A couple from Italy. The man is 55 years old and is a bank manager. His partner is 19 years old and does not work. They have 3 cats and a parrot.
  9. An African couple who work in a Non-Governmental Organization together with their two male friends who also work in the same Non-Governmental Organization. They also have 2 dogs.
  10. A wrestler from Paris with his mother. They will live together with a nationalist, biker German friend of his and his girlfriend who is a nurse. They have a pet hamster.

Beauty bias – Judging people based on how they look

Affinity bias – Choosing people the same as ourselves

Horns Effect –  Negative assumptions cloud our judgment

Confirmation bias – Searching for evidence to back up first impressions

Attribution bias – How we perceive the actions of others

Conformity bias – changing opinions to conform with the group

Halo Effect –  Perceived as having more positive traits than others

Halo Effect

Pyramid of Hate:
2018, Anti-Defamation League