Intelligent people are more likely to be trusting and people who score lower on measures of intelligence tend to be more suspicious, according to a new study published in PLOS One.
Researchers used subjects from the General Social Survey, a massive national US survey issued every one or two years since 1972. Amongst many other things the survey measures (the 2010 edition ran 270 pages of questions on scores of issues) is the intelligence of its subjects and their levels of trust. The survey measured intelligence with a simple vocabulary test, and it measured levels of trust with questions like “Generally speaking, would you say that most people can be trusted or that you can’t be too careful in dealing with people?”
Researchers found a correlation between people of high intelligence and people who, in general, are more trusting. However, why this is so is a bit of a mystery. The authors suggest that more intelligent people are better at judging character, or it could be that they simply aren’t targeted by scammers and swindlers in the same way less intelligent people are.
Don’t believe us? Well, we have some bad news for you . . .