Does lying help you further?

Erasmus School of Economics

Sophie van der Zee, Assistant Professor in the department of Applied Economics at Erasmus School of Economics, is interviewed by BNR Nieuwsradio on 31 July 2018. Topic is her groundbreaking deception research, for which she developed a cutting edge motion-based lie detection suit. With this suit, lies can be detected with 82% accuracy. The research of Sophie van der Zee has gained much media attention over the years. BBC Horizon will broadcast a documentary about her deception research this autumn.

According to Sophie van der Zee, people benefit from dishonest behaviour, since others will believe that you are better than you in fact are and you will get more things done. You see that people who are dishonest are able to come further and this also has been confirmed from an evolutionary point of view. However, this only holds for people who behave slightly dishonestly, but not anymore for extremely dishonest persons. Dishonest people are often also more creative, says Sophie van der Zee. Nevertheless, dishonest behaviour has a negative effect on your self-image. As people want to think about themselves in a positive way, but also want to benefit a little from dishonest behaviour, they will behave dishonest only to the extent that they can justify this, in order to remain able to look at themselves in the mirror.


More information

You can find the entire interview and accompanying article (in Dutch) on BNR Nieuwsradio, 31 July 2018.