Minimal Social Exclusion: A Means to Increased Information Gain in Human Intelligence Interviews?

A series of experimental studies addressing the challenge of increasing the willingness of interviewees and informants to share reliable information with law enforcement and security/intelligence agencies by testing the impact of minimal social exclusion in pre-interview/pre-debrief procedures. The intervention is based on the well-established finding that even a short period of being or feeling ostracised makes an individual more eager to work with others.

The project will include the following elements:

  • Literature review
  • Experiment 1, testing participants’ inclination to share information that it is in their interests to keep hidden with or without a social exclusion manipulation
  • Experiment 2, as Experiment 1 but with a terrorism-relevant scenario

Research questions

  • Does a brief episode of social rejection increase individuals’ proclivity to share sensitive information in an interview setting?

Principal investigator

Professor Pär Anders Granhag


University of Gothenburg, UK



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