Extraversion and Reward Processing
Reward processes have played an increasingly visible role in theories of extraverted personality. Reward processing is usually conceptualized in terms of the brain system responsible for generating incentive motivation and behavioral approach of rewarding stimuli, as in theories by Jeffrey Gray and Richard Depue. Recent increases in the accessibility of neuroscience methods have accelerated our understanding of the relationship between extraversion and neural processing of rewards. An issue that has remained somewhat neglected by this literature concerns the distinctions that have been made between reward desire and reward enjoyment. Higher-level abstractions of reward processing—identifiable in cognitive, social, and narrative approaches—have also received relatively little attention. These promising directions for future research may help further expand knowledge in this area of personality science.