Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Leadership Studies | Other Political Science | Other Psychology | Personality and Social Contexts


This paper presents the results of an indirect assessment of the personality of Ségolène Royal, candidate of the Socialist Party in the 2007 French presidential election.

The study was conducted from the conceptual perspective of Theodore Millon’s model of personality. Information concerning Royal was collected from biographical sources and media reports and synthesized into a personality profile using the second edition of the Millon Inventory of Diagnostic Criteria (MIDC), which yields 34 normal and maladaptive personality classifications congruent with Axis II of DSM–IV.

The personality profile yielded by the MIDC was analyzed on the basis of interpretive guidelines provided in the MIDC and Millon Index of Personality Styles manuals. Royal’s primary personality patterns were found to be Conscientious/compulsive and Ambitious/self-serving, with secondary features of the Dauntless/dissenting, Dominant/controlling, and Contentious/resolute patterns.

The amalgam of strong Conscientious and Ambitious patterns in Royal’s profile suggests the presence of Millon’s bureaucratic compulsive syndrome. According to Millon, people with this personality composite feel empowered in formal organizations, where group rules provide identity and security. They tend to be officious, high-handed, intrusive, petty, meddlesome, and closed-minded.

The major implication of the study is that it offers an empirically based personological framework for anticipating Ségolène Royal’s leadership style as chief executive, thus providing a basis for inferring the character and tenor of a prospective Royal presidency.


The research was conducted by Pascal De Sutter in collaboration with the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics (USPP) at St. John’s University and the College of St. Benedict in Collegeville and St. Joseph, Minnesota, directed by Aubrey Immelman, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, who specializes in the psychological assessment of presidential candidates and world leaders.

More information and updates:

Related report

The Political Personality of French President Nicolas Sarkozy »