Wide-Faced Selfishness Influences Others, Shows Study


Share this Post

A new study published this week in the journal PLOS ONE shows that wide-faced men can influence other people to act selfishly. Researchers from the University of California at Riverside have now shown that the behavior of others around wide-faced men become more selfish when interacting with them.

The study is based on previous findings that show men with wider faces are more aggressive and more likely to lie and cheat than their narrow-faced counterparts. One previous study even found that the financial success of companies could be predicted by the width of their CEO's face (the wider the better). The authors of the new study believe their findings suggest the phenomenon may not be entirely biologically driven.

"This clearly shows that this behavior is also socially driven, not just biologically driven," said Michael Haselhuhn, lead author of the study and a management professor at UC Riverside.

The new study looked at four separate studies of men's faces and behavior. One of the studies found that men with higher width-to-height facial ratios were more selfish when dividing resources with a partner. Two other studies showed that people partnered with high width-to-height facial ratios were more likely to change their behavior to match those men. One more showed that high-ratio men can actually lead their partners to act in certain ways, demonstrating that men with wider faces may have more influence over others.

"People need to think more carefully about how they use power and how they can use it in helpful ways," said Elaine Wong, a co-author of the new study and a management professor at UC Riverside.

(Image courtesy Thinkstock)