The Role of Character Strengths in Economic Decision-Making
Jordan, M. R., & Rand, D. G. (2018). The Role of Character Strengths in Economic Decision-Making. Judgment and Decision making 13 (4), 382-392.
11 Pages Posted: 14 May 2018 Last revised: 4 Aug 2018
Date Written: April 30, 2018
We aggregated data from 28 studies (total N=13,386) to assess the relationship between individual differences in character strengths, as described by the VIA model of character, and economically-relevant behaviors and cognition. Factor analyzing the character strength inventory responses revealed four factors – Caring, Leadership, Inquisitiveness, and Self-control – each of which correlated with a variety of measures. Caring was associated with the willingness to pay costs to benefit others, as well as reliance on intuitive decision-making; Leadership was associated with inefficient, anti-social behaviors, risk taking, and trusting one’s intuitions while also liking to reason; Inquisitiveness was associated with efficient behaviors in both the social and risk domains, and reliance on deliberative decision-making; and Self-control was associated with delaying gratification, risk aversion, and a reliance on reason. These results help shed light on the relationship between character – and personality more generally – and economic behaviors. In doing so, we give some indication of which types of people will be most successful in which decision-making contexts.
Keywords: personality, economic games, uncertainty, intertemporal choice, cognitive style
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