Us versus Them in Context: Meta-Analysis as a Tool for Geotemporal Trends in Intergroup Relations

  • Judy You Rong Tan University of Connecticut
  • Tania B. Huedo-Medina University of Connecticut
  • Carter A. Lennon University of Connecticut
  • Angela C. White University of Connecticut
  • Blair T. Johnson University of Connecticut


The increasing availability of studies from many nations offers important potential insights into group-based psychology and behavior, conflict, and violence. Nonetheless, to date, few cross-national or cultural comparisons of study findings have been made, representing a gap in our understanding of the historical causes and courses of inter-group conflict in current comparative approaches. Meta-analytic methods offer researchers the ability to combine data from studies with groups as well as across time. Our review of statistical methods available for comparative analyses in inter-group research found strengths and limitations for understanding group differences, conflict, and violence, and meta-analytic methods address these limitations by exploring potential structural-level moderators and by identifying how temporal and geographical variations may relate directly to group-based variables. Such methods can contribute to our understanding of broad structural effects on group-based variables by elucidating the mechanisms underlying them.
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