Personality and domain‐specific risk taking

Published on Mar 1, 2005in Journal of Risk Research1.699
· DOI :10.1080/1366987032000123856
Nigel Nicholson39
Estimated H-index: 39
(LBS: London Business School),
Emma Soane22
Estimated H-index: 22
(Kingston Business School)
+ 1 AuthorsPaul Willman19
Estimated H-index: 19
(University of Oxford)
The concept of risk propensity has been the subject of both theoretical and empirical investigation, but with little consensus about its definition and measurement. To address this need, a new scale assessing overall risk propensity in terms of reported frequency of risk behaviours in six domains was developed and applied: recreation, health, career, finance, safety and social. The paper describes the properties of the scale and its correlates: demographic variables, biographical self-reports, and the NEO PI-R, a Five Factor personality inventory ( N = 2041). There are three main results. First, risk propensity has clear links with age and sex, and with objective measures of career-related risk taking (changing jobs and setting up a business). Second, the data show risk propensity to be strongly rooted in personality. A clear Big Five pattern emerges for overall risk propensity, combining high extraversion and openness with low neuroticism, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. At the subscale level, sensation-seeking surfaces as a key important component of risk propensity. Third, risk propensity differs markedly in its distribution across job types and business sectors. These findings are interpreted as indicating that risk takers are of three non-exclusive types: stimulation seekers, goal achievers, and risk adapters. Only the first group is truly risk seeking, the others are more correctly viewed as risk bearers . The implications for risk research and management are discussed.
  • References (41)
  • Citations (409)
📖 Papers frequently viewed together
1,462 Citations
1,791 Citations
1,227 Citations
78% of Scinapse members use related papers. After signing in, all features are FREE.
#1Elke U. Weber (Columbia University)H-Index: 59
#2Ann Renée BlaisH-Index: 3
Last. Nancy E. Betz (OSU: Ohio State University)H-Index: 53
view all 3 authors...
1,462 CitationsSource
#1Margarete E. Vollrath (University of Oslo)H-Index: 32
#2Svenn Torgersen (University of Oslo)H-Index: 46
Ample research has shown that the basic personality factors of neuroticism, extraversion, and conscientiousness (or psychoticism) are important predictors of risky health behaviours. Yet, the findings are increasingly inconsistent. We propose that configurations of the basic personality factors, as represented by a typology, may yield clearer results. In a sample of 683 university students, smoking, consumption of alcohol and drugs, and risky sexual behaviour were examined among eight types. Fin...
144 CitationsSource
#1Craig R. M. McKenzie (UCSD: University of California, San Diego)H-Index: 22
#2Susanna M. Lee (UCSD: University of California, San Diego)H-Index: 1
Last. Karen K. Chen (UCSD: University of California, San Diego)H-Index: 1
view all 3 authors...
Four experiments examined change in confidence after hearing two sides of a dispute. The results showed that a case independently judged to weakly support one side often increased confidence that the opposing side was correct. Furthermore, the stronger the first case, the more likely a subsequent weak case had a reverse impact. Traditional belief-updating models, which tend to focus on change in belief after individual pieces of evidence rather than entire cases, cannot account for these results...
61 CitationsSource
#1John W. Boudreau (Cornell University)H-Index: 36
#2Wendy R. Boswell (A&M: Texas A&M University)H-Index: 32
Last. Robert D. Bretz (ND: University of Notre Dame)H-Index: 5
view all 4 authors...
Research on employee job search and separation traditionally focuses on situationally specific variables. Such variables may change with particular employment situations (e.g., job tenure, salary, perceived organizational success), they may be differentially relevant to work situations over time (e.g., education), or may reflect individual reactions to particular work situations (e.g., job satisfaction). More enduring individual characteristics, particularly personality and cognitive ability, ma...
138 CitationsSource
Four studies examined the construct validity of two global self-esteem measures. In Studies 1 through 3, the Single-Item Self-Esteem Scale (SISE) and the Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale (RSE) showed strong convergent validity for men and women, for different ethnic groups, and for both college students and community members. The SISE and the RSE had nearly identical correlations with a wide range of criterion measures, including domain-specific self-evaluations, self-evaluative biases, social desira...
1,581 CitationsSource
#1Kathleen A. Martin (McMaster University)H-Index: 26
#2Mark R. Leary (Wake Forest University)H-Index: 72
Abstract This study examined adolescents' use of unhealthy and potentially dangerous behaviors for self-presentational reasons. At the start of their first semester at college, 110 freshmen (M age = 18.2) completed trait measures of self-presentational concern. At the end of the semester they were asked about their use of health risk behaviors as impression management tactics. Seventy-five percent of respondents reported performing at least 1 risky behavior for self-presentational reasons during...
55 CitationsSource
#1Marvin Zuckerman (UD: University of Delaware)H-Index: 68
#2D. Michael Kuhlman (UD: University of Delaware)H-Index: 13
The first part of this article describes a study of the relationships between personality and risk-taking in six areas: smoking, drinking, drugs, sex, driving, and gambling. The participants, 260 college students, were given self-report measures of risky behaviors in each of the six areas and the Zuckerman- Kuhlman five-factor personality questionnaire. Generalized risk-taking (across all six areas) was related to scales for impulsive sensation seeking, aggression, and sociability, but not to sc...
861 CitationsSource
#1Melissa L. FinucaneH-Index: 23
#2Paul SlovicH-Index: 109
Last. Theresa A. SatterfieldH-Index: 8
view all 5 authors...
Risks tend to be judged lower by men than by women and by white people than by people of colour. Prior research by Flynn, Slovic and Mertz [Risk Analysis, 14, pp. 1101-1108] found that these race and gender differences in risk perception in the United States were primarily due to 30% of the white male population who judge risks to be extremely low. The specificity of this finding suggests an explanation in terms of sociopolitical factors rather than biological factors. The study reported here pr...
639 CitationsSource
#1Paul SlovicH-Index: 109
Decision Processes, Rationality and Adjustment to Natural Hazards * Cognitive Processes and Societal Risk Taking * Preference for Insuring Against Probable Small Losses: Insurance Implications * Accident Probabilities and Seat Belt Usage: A Psychological Perspective * How Safe Is Safe Enough? A Psychometric Study of Attitudes Toward Technological Risks and Benefits * Rating the Risks * Weighing the Risks: Which Risks are Acceptable? * Facts and Fears: Understanding Perceived Risk * Response Mode...
1,780 Citations
#1Mark Simon (UR: University of Rochester)H-Index: 13
#2Susan M. Houghton (GSU: Georgia State University)H-Index: 11
Last. Karl Aquino (GSU: Georgia State University)H-Index: 44
view all 3 authors...
Abstract Despite the high risk involved, thousands of individuals decide to start ventures. Past research, however, has found that entrepreneurs do not have a high-risk propensity, that is, a great willingness to knowingly take risks. This study, therefore, explores how individuals cope with the risks inherent in their decisions, and suggests that entrepreneurs may not perceive the riskiness of starting ventures. The study's findings suggest that risk perceptions may differ because certain types...
764 CitationsSource
Cited By409
Abstract Perceived social support from family, friends, and significant others is as a key influence on positive behaviour, so potentially reduces risk-taking and offending. Research on these constructs was examined in relation to the influence of personality. We recruited 429 general population participants who completed self-reports of personality, the Dark Triad (DT), risk-taking, offence history, and social support, testing whether social support moderated the expected associations between p...
Abstract Entrepreneurship research has shown significant differences between genders on what concerns technology commercialization. However, most evidence on gender differences focuses on producer centred processes, which is not applicable to user innovation. Furthermore, there is no rigorous evidence explaining these differences in user innovation between male and female individuals. This paper contributes to shed some light on why these differences exist for user innovation, and proposes a fra...
#1Albert NugrahaH-Index: 2
#2Hamin HaminH-Index: 8
Last. Greg ElliottH-Index: 7
view all 3 authors...
Scholars have extensively studied the role of risk reduction strategies in the process of consumer decision-making, although these studies have not yet specifically articulated a comparative typolo...
#1Alenka Slavec Gomezel (University of Ljubljana)
#2Darija Aleksić (University of Ljubljana)H-Index: 2
#2Kati Suomi (UTU: University of Turku)H-Index: 7
Last. Jari StenvallH-Index: 7
view all 6 authors...
#1Gunnar Breivik (Norwegian School of Sport Sciences)H-Index: 14
#2Trond Svela Sand (Norwegian School of Sport Sciences)H-Index: 3
Last. Anders McDonald Sookermany (Staff college)H-Index: 1
view all 3 authors...
The article presents the results of an investigation where the main purpose was to see how willingness to take risks is distributed in the general adult population relative to socio-demographic bac...
#1Rathee D. Sivasubramaniyam (University of Waikato)
#2Samuel G. Charlton (University of Waikato)H-Index: 15
Last. Rebecca J. Sargisson (University of Waikato)H-Index: 5
view all 3 authors...
Abstract In New Zealand, like many other developed countries, a majority of trips (67%) involve the use of private cars, producing negative effects on the environment and public health. Interventions aimed to reduce car use can be successful if we not only understand the reasons car users drive but also why other commuters use more sustainable alternatives. Although a range of possible motivating factors have been previously identified in the literature, the significance of the present study was...
#1Alexandros G. Sahinidis (UWest: University of the West)H-Index: 3
#2Panagiotis A. Tsaknis (UWest: University of the West)
Last. Dimitris Stavroulakis (UWest: University of the West)
view all 4 authors...
The purpose of this paper is to examine the influence of the Big-Five personality traits and risk aversion on entrepreneurial intention. A questionnaire-based survey was employed for the data collection. A total of 422 students and graduates (age 18–25) participated in the survey. The findings showed that extraversion, conscientiousness and risk aversion are important characteristics that influence entrepreneurial intention. Openness to experience, conscientiousness and extraversion have positiv...
#1Adrian Furnham (BI Norwegian Business School)H-Index: 107
#1Rich C. McIlroy (University of Southampton)H-Index: 9
#2Gilbert Kokwaro (Strathmore University)H-Index: 2
Last. Neville A. Stanton (University of Southampton)H-Index: 59
view all 9 authors...
Abstract This paper reports on an exploratory investigation of the influence of five different fatalistic belief constructs (divine control, luck, helplessness, internality, and general fatalism) on three classes of self-reported pedestrian behaviours (memory and attention errors, rule violations, and aggressive behaviours) and on respondents’ general attitudes to road safety, and how relationships between constructs differ across countries. A survey of over 3400 respondents across Bangladesh, C...