Social Categorization Theory
From a social psychology perspective Social Categorization Theory (Haslam, Jetten, Postmes & Haslam, 2009) might be of interest to you. SCT states that self-categorization varies with different social contexts and leads to a depersonalisation in the sense that an individual is less likely to perceive himself as independent but rather as belonging to a group. This self-categorization then leads to group behaviour. SCT has been applied to many different areas. With regard to your question I think the relations of SCT and Perceived Threat (Steele, 1997) are relevant.
SCT and Perceived Threat
Perceived Threat occurs in situations where performance matters and refers to a process in which a member of a stereotyped group is threatened by the perception that other persons perceive him based on that (negative) stereotype. The Perceived Threat leads to stress, which in turn negatively affects performance. The theory has been used to account for the difference in cognitive ability tests between african americans and white people (Blascovich, Spencer, Quinn & Steele, 2001). The authors found that, under a high threat condition, african americans had greater blood pressure and lower test scores than white participants. There was no difference in blood pressure or test scores under a low threat condition.
The theory has also been used to demonstrate negative effects of stereotype against women (Von Hippel, Issa, Ma & Stokes, 2010) and older men (Von Hippel, Kalokerinos & Henry, 2012).
Blascovich, Jim, Steven J. Spencer, Diane Quinn, und Claude Steele (2001). African Americans and high blood pressure: The role of stereotype threat. Psychological Science, 12, 225–229.
Haslam, S. Alexander, Jolanda Jetten, Tom Postmes, und Catherine Haslam (2009). Social identity, health and well-being: An emerging agenda for applied psychology. Applied Psychology 58, 1–23.
Steele, Claude M. (1997). A threat in the air: How stereotypes shape intellectual identity and performance. American Psychologist, 52, 613–629.
Von Hippel, Courtney, Mona Issa, Roslyn Ma, und Abby Stokes (2011). Stereotype threat: Antecedents and consequences for working women. European Journal of Social Psychology, 41, 151–161.
Von Hippel, Courtney, Elise K. Kalokerinos, und Julie D. Henry (2012). Stereotype Threat Among Older Employees: Relationship With Job Attitudes and Turnover Intentions.