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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Doing Business As Name:University of California-Irvine
  • Nadia Chernyak
  • (201) 412-5200
Award Date:07/12/2020
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 736,366
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 135,059
  • FY 2020=$135,059
Start Date:09/15/2020
End Date:08/31/2025
Transaction Type:Grant
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.075
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:CAREER: The development of, and reasoning about, inequality and its rectification
Federal Award ID Number:1945170
DUNS ID:046705849
Parent DUNS ID:071549000
Program:DS -Developmental Sciences
Program Officer:
  • Peter Vishton
  • (703) 292-8132

Awardee Location

Street:141 Innovation Drive, Ste 250
Awardee Cong. District:45

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:University of California - Irvine
Cong. District:45

Abstract at Time of Award

This project investigates the origins of our understanding of fairness and inequality. The first part of the project investigates how our cognitive skills shape our understanding of equity; the second aim then focuses on the specific features of inequality that young children attend to. Finally, the last aim investigates how social factors, such as experiences with systemic disadvantage, shape the development of our reasoning about inequality. This research will help pinpoint the specific stumbling blocks that children – and by extension, adults – face when reasoning about and actively rectifying inequality. Broader impacts include dissemination of the work to the local community and to scholars focused on poverty and education; cross-training a group of researchers from traditionally under-represented groups in research, technical skills, and community outreach; and collaborations with local communities to conduct this work. One of the most pervasive problems of our society is the perpetuation of unequal distribution of resources. While people recognize the pernicious effects of inequality, they face a series of biases that dictate its perpetuation, rather than its rectification. Through a series of experimental developmental studies, the research in this proposal focuses on why people have trouble rectifying inequality by investigating a) how our understanding of inequality develops in early childhood, b) the cognitive mechanisms that shape our understanding of early inequality, and c) how our social experiences and social contexts contribute to our abilities to recognize (un)fairness. The results of this work will shed light on the origins, developmental trajectories, and cognitive underpinnings of our abilities to think about inequitable resource distribution. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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