2017 Student Research Conference:
30th Annual Student Research Conference

Behavioral Traits and Other Factors That Doom Fraud Schemes


Austin L. Tinsley
Dr. Michael Barnes, Faculty Mentor

The purpose of this research is to identify critical behavioral characteristics and psychological traits shared by high-level executives who commit fraud, and explain how these characteristics lead to the inevitable perpetuation and escalation of these fraud schemes. The innate pressures and opportunities of an executive position, along with a lack of empathy, are key contributors that lead to the initial occurrence of fraudulent crimes. Furthermore, rationalization and the justification of wrongdoings, low self-control, and elevated levels of narcissism represent characteristics of fraudsters that prevent them from being able to stop their criminal acts from spiraling out of control. These aforementioned characteristics of why executives commit and continue to engage in fraud can also be similarly explained by various personality disorders. Interestingly enough, the positive qualities of high-level executives can also serve as their downfall, as they become consumed by their deception schemes intended to defraud their company.

Keywords: Behavioral, Traits, Fraud, White-Collar, Perpetuation, Escalation, Rationalization, Schemes

Topic(s):Accounting
Psychology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 106-1
Location: VH 1010
Time: 8:00

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