Journal article

Personality and moral judgment: Curious consequentialists and polite deontologists

Luke D Smillie, Milena Katic, Simon M Laham



OBJECTIVE: How does our personality relate to the ways in which we judge right from wrong? Drawing on influential theories of moral judgment, we identify candidate traits that may be linked with inclinations toward (a) consequentialist judgments (i.e., those based on the outcomes of an action) and (b) deontological judgments (i.e., those based on the alignment of an action with particular moral rules). METHOD: Across two studies (total N = 843) we examined domains and aspects of the Big Five in relation to inclinations toward consequentialist and deontological judgments. RESULTS: In both studies, we found a unique association between intellect (curiosity, cognitive engagement) and consequent..

View full abstract


Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Erin C. R. Lawn, Jessie Sun, and Nicholas Tan for providing thoughtful and constructive feedback on an earlier version of this manuscript. Luke Smillie recieved funding from the Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences.