During social interactions, groups develop collective competencies that (ideally) should assist groups to outperform average standalone individual members (weak cognitive synergy) or the best performing member in the group (strong cognitive synergy). In two experimental studies we manipulate the type of decision rule used in group decision-making (identify the best vs. collaborative), and the way in which the decision rules are induced (direct vs. analogical) and we test the effect of these two manipulations on the emergence of strong and weak cognitive synergy. Our most important results indicate that an analogically induced decision rule (imitate-the-successful heuristic) in which groups have to identify the best member and build on his/her performance (take-the-best heuristic) is the most conducive for strong cognitive synergy. Our studies bring evidence for the role of analogy-making in groups as well as the role of fast-and-frugal heuristics for group decision-making.
Meslec, M. N., Curseu, P. L., Meeus, M. T. H., & Fodor, O. C. (2014). When none of us perform better than all of us together: The role of analogical decision rules in groups. PLoS ONE, 9(1), [e85232]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0085232