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Are Personality Traits Really Fixed and Does It Matter?

Steven Stillman and Malathi Velamuri ()
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Malathi Velamuri: Chennai Mathematical Institute

No 13342, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: A nascent but burgeoning literature examines the importance of non-cognitive skills in determining success across many facets of life. The majority of these papers treat these skills as fixed traits for adults. We estimate the impact of a number of life events on the Big Five personality traits and locus of control. A subset of life events have large impacts on these non-cognitive skills, especially on locus of control. For some events, these impacts persist in the medium-run. We then demonstrate that treating personality traits as fixed can lead to biased estimates of their relationship with socioeconomic outcomes.

Keywords: personality; non-cognitive skills; life events; fixed (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C18 J24 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 29 pages
Date: 2020-06
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-lma and nep-neu
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (4)

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