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TIME: The Best Way to Get People to Tell the Truth, According to Science

By July 11, 2018April 23rd, 2020No Comments

By Eric VanEpps for TIME:

“You’ve never lied on your résumé, right?”

“Did your campaign coordinate with the Russian government during the 2016 election?”

“Will you sign with the Lakers this summer?”

If you ask me a question, you expect my response to be truthful. Otherwise, why would you even bother to ask the question? But it turns out that changing the way you phrase a question can affect whether people answer honestly or whether they conceal the truth.

In a series of studies published in the journal Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, my colleagues and I tested how question phrasing influenced how people respond in competitive settings such as negotiations or job interviews, where people are strategic about what information they choose to reveal.

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