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Are you saying that the box you checked beforehand influenced the results?

I strongly suspect so.
Or just that it's implausible that it found you were biased against your own ethnicity?

That too.
Maybe we can agree that studies are called for?

This is an interesting question to research, but I don’t see how it can be done in practice. First, if you use volunteers for the experiment you are already skewing the results due to self-selection effect (volunteer “bigots” and “non-bigots” are likely to be different from “bigots” and “non-bigots” in the general population). More importantly, due to the highly controversial nature of the question I would not trust people in charge of the experiment to conduct it in a truly scientific way. As with most sociological experiments, the published results are likely to reflect the biases of the researchers rather than the truth.

A somewhat related question – what do you think of allowing the use of polygraphs?

You're probably right that, if unconscious bias doesn't actually affect team performance, that result would have trouble making it to publication. Maybe the team would need an unmeasured scapegoat explanation handy so that if their results are negative, they can say 'Unconscious bias isn't the problem, so it must be X' and save some face.

I have no objection to the use of polygraph as an instrument. I would place some restrictions on what questions can be asked, though. My first impulse is that any question you aren't allowed to ask on polygraph, you shouldn't be able to ask at all.

Silent Cal
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