The Non-Cognitive Roots of Civic Honesty: Evidence from the US

TitleThe Non-Cognitive Roots of Civic Honesty: Evidence from the US
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsBucciol, A, Zarri, L
JournalJournal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics
ISBN Number2214-8043
KeywordsCivic Honesty, gender, Personality Traits, socioeconomic status

Even though a large experimental literature explored the links between personality and honesty, available evidence is inconclusive. In this study, we provide large-scale evidence on the influence of the “Big Five” personality traits on civic honesty, by also considering the roles played by individuals’ socioeconomic status and the gender dimension. To this aim, we rely on survey data from the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), which is representative of the US population aged 50 or more. We show that most “Big Five” traits significantly affect civic honesty, with Agreeableness being the strongest predictor. We view our findings as complementing and extending to civic-minded behavior the results of prior work on cheating based on small samples and non-representative subject pools.

Citation Key11916