Even after controlling for variables such as race, income and education levels, a state's dominant personality turns out to be strongly linked to certain outcomes. Amiable states, like Minnesota, tend to be lower in crime. Dutiful states -- an eclectic bunch that includes New Mexico, North Carolina and Utah -- produce a disproportionate share of mathematicians. States that rank high in openness to new ideas are quite creative, as measured by per-capita patent production. But they're also high-crime and a bit aloof. Apparently, Californians don't much like socializing, the research suggests.
The study did not control for how long a person lived in their current state. It also did not find out why personality traits congregate the way they do. Is it something about the region itself, or the genes of the people born there? Can you "catch" certain traits by moving to a new state? My home state of Kentucky is only ranked high for neuroticism. The Wall Street Journal article includes an interactive map where you can look up your state's personality traits. Link -Thanks, christophe!