CICP (Center for Indigenous and Cultural Psychology) held a Knowledge Sharing and Discussion: Cultural Perspectives on Just World Belief on August 21st, 2017. Phatthanakit Chobthamkit (Bryan), a Ph.D. student at University of Kent, UK, and a lecturer at Thammasat University, Thailand shared his ongoing research about just world belief, a belief that the world is just, in this forum. Bryan wanted to understand the role of cultural, social and economics factors affecting just world belief in ASEAN societies. He purposively chose ASEAN countries for his research because he found that the region was understudied for such topic. Since ASEAN countries are known as collectivistic, some researchers assumed that general belief in a just world, the belief that people in general would get what they deserved, would be of vital importance for ASEAN societies. Thus, general belief in a just world could positively affect their wellbeing. However, Bryan’s preliminary research finding revealed that personal belief in a just world, the belief that I would get what I deserved, was more significant in affecting the wellbeing of Thai students, as Thailand was the country he conducted his research at. This interesting finding led Bryan to conduct a further study in seven ASEAN countries with more than four thousand subjects from twenty cities. Bryan would conduct this research in collaboration with Galang Lufityanto, Ph.D., the coordinator of one of research clusters in CICP, Deception and Culture, and Samudera Fadlilla Jamaluddin, CICP’s research assistant.
Bryan’s lecture was followed by a discussion session. One of the participants stated that his research was interesting. However, she was concerned by the fact that Indonesia was a country with various cultures and religions which, in her opinion, did not clearly distinguish general belief in a just world and personal belief in a just world. She was worried that it would be an obstacle for him to analyze the data. Bryan appreciated her concern and answered that in his opinion, diversity could potentially enrich the analysis. It could even fill the existing gap in the current literature of just world belief theories.
Knowledge Sharing and Discussion: Cultural Perspectives on Just World Belief was held in G100, Faculty of Psychology, Universitas Gadjah Mada with more than seventy people participating in the event. Participants came from various background: students and non-students; undergraduate students to doctoral students who studied not only at UGM. Adelia Khrisna Putri, S.Psi., M.Sc was the moderator for the knowledge sharing and discussion.