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January 2014
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TD Magazine

Word Wiz: Allophilia

Allophilia, having positive feelings for a group to which one does not belong, is derived from Greek words meaning "liking or love of another." It's relatively new to the dictionary: The term was coined in 2006 by Harvard University professor Todd Pittinsky after he was unable to find an antonym to the word "prejudice."

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Pittinsky has since formed the Allophilia Project, which seeks to understand and promote allophilia in schools, the workplace, communities, and countries. The Center for Public Leadership claims allophilia as a framework for effective intergroup leadership.

"Providing strong ingroup leadership without bolstering negative attitudes toward outgroup members is one of the salient challenges of contemporary leadership," Pittinsky writes. "By helping leaders see how their actions are—or are not—accomplishing both objectives simultaneously, the concept of allophilia can help leaders choose conflict-reducing interventions that will have longer-lasting effects."

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The Association for Talent Development (ATD) is a professional membership organization supporting those who develop the knowledge and skills of employees in organizations around the world. The ATD Staff, along with a worldwide network of volunteers work to empower professionals to develop talent in the workplace.
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