Extraversion and compatibilist intuitions: a ten-year retrospective and meta-analyses

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The past ten years have seen multiple attempts to estimate the relation between the global personality trait extraversion and compatibilist free will judgments. Here, we contribute to that line of research by conducting a meta-analysis of 17 published and eight unpublished studies (N = 2,811) estimating that relation. Overall, the mean effect size was modest but remarkably robust across materials, locations, and labs (z = .19, 95% CI .15-.24, p < .001). No significant publication bias was detected in the studies (t (23) = 1.88, p = .07). While there was no significant heterogeneity in the studies (Q (24) = 34.42, p = .08, I2 = 26.05), a moderator analysis suggested that the effect is strongest in cases that contain highly affective actions (e.g., murder) (z = .22, 95% CI .17-.28, p < .001) and weakest in cases that contain actions with low affect (e.g., asking whether free will is compatible with determinism) (z = .09, 95% CI -.05-.23, p = .22). The meta-analysis provides additional evidence that extraversion is related to compatibilist free will judgments and helps to identify opportunities to discover boundary conditions and more proximal causal mechanisms for the relation. The results of the meta-analysis also have implications for informed decision making.

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Publisher's version of record: https://doi.org/10.1080/09515089.2019.1572692

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Philosophical Psychology