Social Psychology in Life

By Richard M. Rozelle; Richard I. Evans | Go to book overview

10
The Connecticut Speed Crackdown: A Study of the Effects of Legal Change

H. LAURENCE ROSS and DONALD T. CAMPBELL

As the present paper demonstrates, the social psychologist can make valuable contributions in assessing the actual, long- term effects of social and legal reforms. Through the use of ingenious methodological analyses, the present investigators reveal that what was thought to be an effective legal procedure, an intensive crackdown on speeding, actually created no more reduction in the accident rate than would have been expected to occur without a crackdown over a period of time.

This application of social psychological methodology points to the necessity for careful and systematic evaluation of various social programs to discover those that truly contribute to the advancement of mankind.

____________________
From: H. L. Ross, ed., Perspectives on the Social Order, Second Edition ( New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1968), pp. 30-35. Reprinted by permission of the authors and publisher.

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