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Some researchers may find this grouping of papers helpful: 

 AI Risks

What are the economic, reputational, and liability risks for firms, and the welfare risks for consumers, of employing AI?

  • De Freitas, J., & Cohen, G. (2024). Regulating and managing the mental health risks of generative AI. Nature Medicine

  • De Freitas, Uǧuralp, A. K., Oguz, Z., & Puntoni, S. (2023). Chatbots and mental health: Insights into the safety of generative AI. Journal of Consumer Psychology.

  • Valenzuela, A., Puntoni, S., Hoffman, D., Castelo, N., De Freitas, J., Dietvorst, B., Hildebrand, C., Huh, Y. E., Meyer, R., Sweeney, M., Talaifar, S., Tomaino, G., Wertenbroch, K. (2024). How artificial intelligence constrains the human experience. Conditionally accepted at Journal of the Association of Consumer Research.

  • De Freitas, J. (2023). Will consumers buy 'selfish' self-driving cars? The Wall Street Journal.

  • De Freitas, J., & Cikara, M. (2021). Deliberately prejudiced self-driving vehicles elicit the most outrage. Cognition. [supp. materials]

  • De Freitas, J., Anthony, S. A., Censi, A., & Alvarez, G. A. (2020). Doubting driverless dilemmas. Perspectives on Psychological Science.

  • De Freitas, J., Censi, A., Smith, B. W., Di Lillo, L., Anthony, S. E., & Frazzoli, E. (2021). From driverless dilemmas to more practical common-sense tests for automated vehicles. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. [supp. materials]

Barriers to AI Adoption 

What are the psychological factors driving attitudes toward artificial intelligence (AI) tools, and how can resistance to AI systems be overcome when they are beneficial? Here we first organize the main sources of resistance into five main categories: opacity, emotionlessness, rigidity, autonomy and group membership. We also separate each of the five barriers into AI-related and user-related factors, which is of practical relevance in developing interventions towards the adoption of beneficial AI tools. 

  • De Freitas, J., Agarwal, S., Schmitt, B., & Haslam, N. (2023). Psychological factors underlying attitudes toward AI tools. Nature Human Behavior**Review**

  • Agarwal, S., De Freitas, J., & Ragnhildstveit, A., Morewedge, C. (2024). Acceptance of automated vehicles is lower for self than others Journal of the Association for Consumer Research

The True Self

These studies uncover a default tendency for people to believe that deep inside every individual and entity there is a “good true self” calling them to behave in a morally virtuous manner. We propose that this belief arises from a general cognitive tendency known as moral essentialism. 

Common Knowledge and Recursive Mentalizing

Most work in psychology has studied the representation of other's beliefs about the world, aka theory of mind. My collaborators and I have investigated how representations of knowledge -- including knowledge that others have about our own beliefs (e.g., you know X, I know that you know X), and common knowledge (you know X, I know that you know X, you know that I know that you know X, ad infinitum) -- affect diverse social phenomena such as the bystander effect and perceptions of charitability. We propose that -- rather than being represented as an explicit, multiply nested proposition -- common knowledge may be a distinctive cognitive state, corresponding to the sense that something is public or "out there".

Moral Judgment

What are the perceptual and cognitive mechanisms underlying our everyday ability to make moral judgments? 

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