Management and Organizational Studies Publications

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Personality and Individual Differences

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While the relationships between aversive personality traits and prosocial behavior still leave a lot up for debate, typically, people with a darker personality tend not to be associated with prosocial behavior. Interestingly, a few studies have found that behaving prosocially is not incompatible with the Dark Tetrad. In this study, we examine the relationships between the Dark Tetrad (subclinical narcissism and psychopathy, Machiavellianism, and everyday sadism) and charitable giving. Individuals (N = 529) completed measures of the Dark Tetrad, the Big Five, and individual charitable giving questions. Direct-entry regression revealed that everyday sadism positively predicted keeping more money for oneself. Donations made to an animal charity were predicted by being a woman with higher agreeableness and lower sadism scores. Moreover, we found that age, psychopathy, and narcissism positively predicted the importance of public recognition from donations. Our results suggest that people with higher scores in the Dark Tetrad tend to prioritize self-interest over charitable giving and value public recognition.


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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Available for download on Tuesday, July 01, 2025