Take too much Risk? Must be the testosterone…

By Maria Konnikova, Big Think Blog

When we think testosterone, we think macho. We think male, manly. We probably also think aggressive. And we think that with good reason. Men do traditionally have higher testosterone levels than do women, and higher testosterone has indeed been associated repeatedly with increased risk-taking behavior, especially in social domains (where aggression would fall). That’s also one of the reasons, runs the common wisdom, that on the whole, women tend to be more risk-averse than men.  But is this always the case?

Both too much and too little testosterone increase risk-taking and ambiguity tolerance

A recent study in Psychological Science examined risk preferences (as well as ambiguity preference) specifically within the economic domain, and found that the relationship between testosterone and risk preference is actually a U-shape: too much or too little, and your appetite for risk increases. And the relationship holds whether you’re male or female. Read more >