In a new study, Paul AG Forbes and colleagues found that adults with autism show a more tolerant attitude towards strangers than adults without autism.
The study also found that adults with autism were less susceptible to how their generosity was structured. Adults with autism were on average 88% more likely to make more lenient choices, while non-autistic participants she was 75%. The observed increase in generosity was especially true for those socially distancing. In other words, autistic adults were much more tolerant of strangers than non-autistic adults.
The author writes:
“Compared to a group of non-autistic participants, we found that autistic adults shared more money with people they didn’t feel close to, especially strangers.” suggested that adults with autism were more tolerant because they consistently made fair decisions regardless of the distance to the person they were sharing with. By showing that people show generosity, our results may help change public perceptions of autism and improve opportunities for people with autism.”
Current work investigates differences in social discounting in autistic and non-autistic subjects. Social discounting is the tendency of people to become less tolerant towards those who are socially distant from themselves as opposed to friends and family. 53 participants were recruited. Twenty-eight were formally diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder and 25 were non-autistic adults.
Participants took the Autism Quotient (AQ) survey, which answers questions about autistic traits related to social skills, communication, attention switching, attention to detail, and imagination. Participants were then given a test in which they rated social distancing as 1, 5, 10, 20 (friends and close acquaintances), 50 (people they had met several times), or 100 (strangers). rice field. Participants were then asked to divide the money between themselves and others.
The trial was presented in two separate frames, gain and loss. In the gain frame, the other person is depicted as having 0 euros, and both participants must choose whether he will receive 75 euros or more. of people received nothing.
In the loss frame, the opponent is depicted as having €75, and the participant either gives himself €75 and gives nothing to his opponent, or loses €75 to his opponent and gives himself more money. You have to decide how much you get.
Autistic participants were more likely than non-autistic participants to make generous choices when distributing money in trials. 75% of participants were non-autistic, even though they made a lenient choice in probability.
Autistic participants made more prosocial decisions than non-autistic participants. Autistic participants were less susceptible to social distancing in the trial and were more willing to distribute money to strangers evenly. was less affected by framing it as a loss or gain of
The observed increase in generosity was associated with three aspects of the AQ subscale: social skills, communication and attention switching, but not attention to detail or imagination. The authors say the findings indicate that prosocial behavior may be associated with both social and non-social aspects of autism. Attention switching was the only His AQ subscale associated with reduced framing effects in autistic participants.
The current study has some limitations. First, the small sample size makes generalization to larger populations questionable. All autistic participants were recruited from outpatient clinics. That is, those not receiving treatment were not represented. Because little demographic information was available for participants, the relationship between generosity and race, class, income, etc. may have been overlooked.
The author concludes:
“We show that compared to neurotypical groups, adults with autism are more tolerant of others, especially socially distanced people. Autism This increased generosity suggests that both the social and non-social aspects of the brain contribute to these effects, including social interaction and communication, and greater self-reported difficulties in switching attention. We suggest that adults with autism implement fairness standards more consistently and are more permissive, but further research is needed to test these claims. We also extend previous studies showing reduced framing effects in autism. We challenge historical explanations for autism by showing that it can also have beneficial effects.”
Previous research found Reducing cognitive biases in people with autismwhich may partially explain the findings of the current study that participants with autism are less susceptible to social distancing and framing of losses and gains.
Studies have found that autism screening of young children produces many false positives. Probably 82% of positive testsThe increase in autism diagnoses may be partially explained by: “Virtual Autism,” Mimicking of autistic traits caused by excessive exposure to screens such as televisions, video games, tablets, and computers. I’m here. exploit people to sell compulsory treatment.
Social discounting and its consequences can be much more pronounced as Governments around the world are under pressure to pursue policies on concerns such as climate changeAs social discounts decline, people are more likely to part with luxuries (Increase in carbon usage, etc.) for the benefit of others.
Forbes, P., Chaliani, I., Schilbach, L. (2022). Adults with autism show tolerance towards socially distant individuals. Preprint (link)