Academic Study Finds That Men Tend to Make More Extreme Decisions Than Women

A new study by scholars at the University of Lausanne in Switzerland and the University of Sydney in Australia finds that men are more likely to have extreme time, risk, and social preferences, while women are more likely to have moderate preferences.

In other words, men tend to make decisions that are more on the extreme while women are more likely to make moderate decisions. The authors note that the more extreme decisions of men can result in both positive and negative outcomes.

“The question of whether men and women make systematically different choices and decisions is one of the most fundamental (and controversial) questions in psychological research,” explains Stefan Volk an associate professor at the University of Sydney Business School and co-author of the study. “We found men were much more likely than women to be at the extreme ends of the behavioral spectrum, either acting very selfishly or very altruistically, very trusting or very distrusting, very fair or very unfair, very risky or very risk averse and were either very short-term or very long-term focused.”

The full study, “Converging Evidence for Greater Male Variability in Time, Risk, and Social Preferences,” was published on the website of the Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences. It may be accessed here.

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