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Intelligent People More Likely To Trust Other People

Update Date: Mar 19, 2014 09:01 AM EDT

Intelligent people are more likely to trust other people compared to those who score lower on measures of intelligence, according to a recent study. The study has been based on an analysis of the General Social Survey carried out every one to two years in United States. 

According to researchers, one plausible explanation might be that intelligent people are better at judging characters and hence they tend to form relationship with people who are less likely to betray them. 

The research also supports previous researches that analyzed data on trust and intelligence from European countries as well. 

"Intelligence is shown to be linked with trusting others, even after taking into account factors like marital status, education and income. This finding supports what other researchers have argued, namely that being a good judge of character is a distinct part of human intelligence which evolved through natural selection. However, there are other possible interpretations of the evidence, and further research is needed to disentangle them," said lead author Noah Carl, from the Department of Sociology, in the press release.

The study also noted that individuals who trust others report better health and happiness. 

"People who trust others seem to report better health and greater happiness. The study of social trust therefore has wider implications in public health, governmental policy and private charity, and there are good reasons to think that governments, religious groups and other civic organizations should try to cultivate more trust in society. Social trust has become an increasingly important topic for academics, who want to understand the causes of better health and greater happiness within society," added researcher Professor Francesco Billari, also from the Department of Sociology, in the press release.

The study has been published in the journal PLOS ONE

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