Why are so many followers of radical strains of Islam engineers? A new work searches for (and finds) some answers. Roughly, the traits of engineers and extremists overlap.
What the book finds is that engineers are also significantly represented among far right groups, while humanities and social sciences graduates dominate the far left; and the authors argue that the ideology of Islamist radicals, stripped of its religious components, overlaps far more with that of extreme right-wingers than with that of radical left-wingers.
They suggest that the traits that make Islamism attractive to some engineers could also be what makes right-wing extremism attractive to other graduates.
“Political psychology research links a number of personality traits to right-wing attitudes: a propensity to be easily disgusted, a desire to draw rigid social boundaries and a preference for order, structure, and certainty known as ‘need for cognitive closure’,” Dr Hertog said.
“We find that, on average, indicators for these traits are stronger among engineers compared with graduates in general, while they are weaker among students of humanities and social science.” (Source)
Maybe engineers just like things tidy? See The Ideology of Disgust