Risk taking and the dark triad

Last registered on July 06, 2021


Trial Information

General Information

Risk taking and the dark triad
Initial registration date
July 05, 2021

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
July 06, 2021, 10:45 AM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.



Primary Investigator


Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Universitaet Hamburg

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
This study aims to provide evidence about how the three dark triad personality traits (Machiavellianism, narcissim and psychopathy) affect risk taking in the lab. Without social context, we expect that neither of these three traits are associated with more risk seeking in a Holt and Laury (2005) risk elicitation task. We expect that individuals scoring high in psychopathy however show the tendency to gamble more in a skewed investment choice with a negative expected return.
Adding social comparison to the picture, we expect to find that individuals invest more into skewed assets and that dark triad personality traits are consistently associated with more risk taking.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Jaeger, Tim and Petra Steinorth. 2021. "Risk taking and the dark triad." AEA RCT Registry. July 06. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7916-1.0
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Experimental Details


Individuals make risky choices with and without social context
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
SD3 score, Risk taking in Holt and Laury 2005 as well as skewed assets with and without social context
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Individuals make choices under risk with and without social context. We survey dark triad personality traits with the SD3.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization was done automated hroot/ O-Tree.
Randomization Unit
randomization per experimental session and randomization in 3 treatments per sessions
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
6 cluster (2 sessions per 3 treatments)
Sample size: planned number of observations
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
360 participants answer SD3 and play Holt Laury task
108 investment without social context
252 investment with social context
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number


Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Is the intervention completed?
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials