为了确定减少团体冲突的因素，研究人员首先将露营者聚集在一起进行有趣的活动（例如一起吃饭或一起看电影）。 但是，这不能减少冲突； 例如，一起吃饭变成了食物争斗。 接下来，谢里夫（Sherif）和他的同事们试图让这两个小组按照心理学家所说的上级目标开展工作，这是两个小组都关心的目标，他们必须共同努力才能实现。 例如，该营地的供水被切断（研究人员的一种手段，迫使这两个小组进行互动），而伊格斯和拉特勒斯共同努力解决了这个问题。 在另一种情况下，运送露营者食物的卡车将无法启动（同样，这是由研究人员上演的事件），因此，这两个小组的成员都用绳子拉了拉破损的卡车。
To identify factors that reduce group conflict, the researchers first brought campers together for fun activities (such as eating together or watching a movie together). However, this does not reduce conflict; for example, eating together becomes a food battle. Next, Sherif and his colleagues tried to get the two groups to work according to what their psychologists called their superiors. This is a goal that both groups care about, and they must work together to achieve it. For example, water supply to the camp was cut off (a means for researchers to force the two teams to interact), and Iggs and Ratlers worked together to solve the problem. In another case, the trucks carrying camper’s food would not start (again, this was an event staged by researchers), so members of both groups pulled the broken trucks with a rope.