Cognitive reflection, 2D:4D and social value orientation

Kobe Millet*, Aylin Aydinli

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The current study seeks confirmation for the hypothesis that 2D:4D (positively) predicts prosociality when people are more likely to rely on intuition than deliberation. We assess intuition and deliberation using the Cognitive Reflection Test (CRT) and measure prosociality via the validated Social Value Orientation (SVO) slider measure. Although our results do not provide collective evidence for our main proposition, we observe in the data that for low (right) 2D:4D men, the more intuitive they are, the less prosocial they become, whereas for high (right) 2D:4D men the thinking style does not affect their prosociality. Importantly, we find that two alternative measures of cognitive reflection, CRT and CRT-2, differently relate to prosocial decision making such that only CRT-2 (but not the classic CRT) positively predicts prosociality. Given that previous research on the role of cognitive reflection and 2D:4D in prosocial decision making provided inconsistent results, the present study findings are highly valuable to get a better understanding in this domain of study. Furthermore, some of our findings invite further confirmatory tests, thereby opening up multiple avenues for further research.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0212767
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 22 Feb 2019


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