Spielmann and Rossi’s work confirms human’s bias toward larger options. As they report “Through four studies, including a field study, we examine the associative semantic schema deduced from wider (versus narrower) glassware rim and how the ‘bigger is better’ bias influences consumer purchase behavior (i.e., choice, consumption, purchase intentions, and willingness to pay). The findings show that consumers are more likely to value beverages when the glass rim is wider. . . .
Spence continues to add to the body of research linking tastes experienced and information gathered using other sensory channels; it is likely that these associations can also inform responses that can be anticipated to additional sensory experiences. Spence reports that “people intuitively match roundness with sweetness, while picking angular forms to represent the other four basic tastes. . . . Roundness is also associated with and tends to accentuate, creaminess. . . . sourness and spiciness are both associated with angularity. . . .
Joye and teammates probed how spending time in nature influences interpersonal behavior and their findings support planning that enables in-nature experiences. They found that “State-level recreational nature engagement is a positive predictor of prosociality and – to a lesser degree – a negative predictor of antisociality.” The team determined that “the extent to which a population recreates in or enjoys the outdoors––explains regional differences in prosocial patterns of other-regard and kindness.
Joye and colleagues’ work confirms how significantly what we see influences what we eat. They “tested if savoring (visual) beauty could satiate consumers, such that they would no longer feel the need to satisfy themselves via actual eating. In two studies, participants had to watch photos of aesthetically appealing (versus unappealing) natural scenes/phenomena, after which we assessed their impatience and desire to eat their favorite food. Results show that experiencing natural beauty decreased food impatience and desire in low BMI individuals.
Trost and colleagues investigated human responses to live and recorded music. They report that “Unlike recorded music, intense musical emotions are most often expressed in live musical performances and are experienced when listening to live music in concerts, given the dynamic relationship between performing artists and the audience. Here, we show that live music can stimulate the affective brain of listeners more strongly and consistently than recorded music.”
Lopez and associates confirm previous findings indicating that visual cues have a meaningful effect on what we eat. The team asks “Imagine a bowl of soup that never emptied, no matter how many spoonfuls you ate—when and how would you know to stop eating? Satiation can play a role in regulating eating behavior, but research suggests visual cues may be just as important. In a seminal study by Wansink et al. (2005), researchers used self-refilling bowls to assess how visual cues of portion size would influence intake.
Erica Hepper and many teammates studied the implications of feeling nostalgic; aspects of the environment can trigger nostalgia. The team reports that “Nostalgia is a social, self-relevant, and bittersweet (although mostly positive) emotion that arises when reflecting on fond past memories. . . . This study . . . examined dispositional nostalgia, self-reported triggers of nostalgia, and functions of experimentally induced nostalgia in young adults across 28 countries and a special administrative region of China (i.e., Hong Kong).
Keating and team studied the effects of virtual work on what are known as “negative work behavior” (NWB). They report that “Negative work behavior (NWB) occurs with concerning frequency in virtual work environments. Despite their prevalence and a substantial, multidisciplinary research literature on virtual negative behaviors in general, we lack clear answers regarding if, how, and why conditions differentiating virtual (i.e., computer-mediated) from face-to-face (F2F) work impact perpetrators’, victims’, and bystanders’ involvement in NWB. . . .
Pagnini and colleagues probed stress in an isolated, confined, extreme space—one that people can’t leave whenever they want—an Antarctic base. They report that “Long-duration missions in isolated, confined, and extreme environments, including Antarctica and upcoming deep-space operations, can be a source of increased stress. . . . crew members from two Antarctic expeditions at the Concordia base were repeatedly assessed over the course of a 12-month mission for stress (Perceived Stress Scale) and mindfulness. . . .
Yuan, Du, and Jiang studied the psychological effects of being awed; awe can be inspired by multiple factors in the physical world, including exquisite workmanship, use of exceptional materials, and large size, for example. The Yuan-lead team report that “in this research, we aimed to clarify how and when awe contributes to meaning in life. In six studies . . . We consistently found a positive indirect effect of awe on meaning in life via authentic-self pursuit . . . which arised beyond happiness and self-smallness . . . and also held for awe brought on by a threatening experience. .