nep-gen New Economics Papers
on Gender
Issue of 2018‒11‒19
seven papers chosen by
Jan Sauermann
Stockholms universitet

  1. Voter Bias and Women in Politics By Le Barbanchon, Thomas; Sauvagnat, Julien
  2. Social Norms and Competitiveness: My Willingness to Compete Depends on Who I am (supposed to be) By Zhang, Peilu; Zhang, Yinjunjie; Palma, Marco
  3. Have your cake and eat it too: real effort and risk aversion in schoolchildren By Della Giusta, Marina; Di Girolamo, Amalia
  4. A man´s world? – The impact of a male dominated environment on female leadership By Born, Andreas; Ranehill, Eva; Sandberg, Anna
  5. Friendship and Female Education: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Bangladeshi Primary Schools By Hahn, Youjin; Islam, Asadul; Patacchini, Eleonora; Zenou, Yves
  6. The Dynamics of Discrimination: Theory and Evidence By Aislinn Bohren; Alex Imas; Michael Rosenberg
  7. Fathers' parental leave-taking, childcare involvement and mothers' labor market participation By Tamm, Marcus

  1. By: Le Barbanchon, Thomas; Sauvagnat, Julien
    Abstract: We study and quantify the implications of voter bias and electoral competition for the gender composition of politicians. We show that unfavorable voters' attitudes towards women and local gender earnings gaps correlate negatively with the share of female candidates in both French Parliamentary elections, and across countries. Using within-candidate variation only, we also find that female candidates in French elections obtain lower vote shares in municipalities with higher gender earnings gaps. We then propose a model of political selection with voter bias. We show theoretically that when voters are biased against women, political parties facing gender quotas tend to select male candidates in the most contestable districts. We take this test to the data using the introduction of gender quotas in France, and find strong support for the existence of a voter bias in favor of male candidates. Finally, we calibrate our model and confirm in simulations that electoral competition significantly hinders the effectiveness of gender quotas in boosting women's presence in politics.
    Keywords: Electoral Competition; gender attitudes; Gender Quotas; women in politics
    JEL: D72 D78 J16
    Date: 2018–10
  2. By: Zhang, Peilu; Zhang, Yinjunjie; Palma, Marco
    Abstract: Women often respond less favorably to competition than men. In this paper, we test for the effects of social norms on willingness to compete. Subjects compete in two-person teams. In the treatment, one team member is randomly assigned the role of “breadwinner”, and the other person is randomly assigned as the “supporter”. There are no real differences between the roles in our experiment, except for the framing. These two roles have opposite social norms for competitiveness, reminiscent of gender roles in western society. In the baseline, subjects compete in two-person teams without role assignment. We find women’s willingness to compete significantly increases when they are assigned as breadwinners compared to women in the base- line or female supporters. We also find that there is no gender gap in willingness to compete between female breadwinners and males in the baseline. The increase in willingness to compete is mainly contributed by high-ability women. Males are also affected by the role assignment; male supporters are less likely to enter the tournament than male breadwinners. We argue that the changes in willingness to compete are mainly driven by the social norms implied by the two roles.
    Keywords: gender gap, gender stereotypes, tournament entry
    JEL: A14 B54 C90
    Date: 2018–10–05
  3. By: Della Giusta, Marina; Di Girolamo, Amalia
    Abstract: There is a large body of evidence documenting gender differences in preferences and their effects on a range of behaviours (including health and risky behaviours) and choices (including education, labour market, savings, marriage, and fertility). A key issue in order to mitigate some of the undesirable effects of these differences (the tendency for boys to engage in more risky behaviours or for girls to avoid choices that might instead benefit them) is establishing how soon such differences arise. Gender differences in competitiveness and risk aversion have been widely documented both in the lab and the field (Falk et al, 2015), and more recently adapting experiments normally performed with adults to children (Samak, 2013; Harbaugh et al., 2002). We advance this literature with a study of primary school children which consists of an innovative two-stage task game addressing both effort and risk: in the first stage a real effort task allows children to accumulate points playing a video game, and in the second they play a lottery game in which probabilities are presented visually. The two-stage task game is designed in order to avoid both the valuation and the probability problems that children normally face in such tasks. Our findings confirm the existence of gender differences in risk aversion once controlling for performance in a gender neutral task in schoolchildren, and contribute a visual way of using lotteries with children that yields results consistent with rational behaviour
    Keywords: Gender; Risk Aversion; Child Preferences; Artefactual Field Experiment
    JEL: C79 C90 D81 J70
    Date: 2018–07
  4. By: Born, Andreas (Department of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics); Ranehill, Eva (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Sandberg, Anna (Swedish Institute for Social Research, Stockholm University)
    Abstract: Despite the significant growth in female labor force participation and educational attainment over the past decades, few women reach leadership positions. In this study, we explore whether male dominated environments, in and of themselves, adversely affect women´s willingness to lead a team. We find that women randomly assigned to male majority teams are less willing to become team leaders than women assigned to female majority teams. Analyses of potential mechanisms show that women in male majority teams are less confident in their relative performance, less influential, and more swayed by others in team discussions. They also (accurately) believe that they will receive less support from team members in a leadership election. Taken together, our results indicate that the absence of women in male dominated contexts may be a self-reinforcing process.
    Keywords: leadership; gender differences; experiment
    JEL: C92 J16
    Date: 2018–11
  5. By: Hahn, Youjin; Islam, Asadul; Patacchini, Eleonora; Zenou, Yves
    Abstract: We randomly assigned 150 primary schools in Bangladesh to one of three settings: children studying individually, children studying in groups with friends, and children studying in groups with peers. The groups consisted of four people with similar average cognitive abilities and household characteristics. While the achievement of male students was not affected by the group assignment, low-ability females in groups with friends outperformed low-ability females working with peers by roughly 0.4 standard deviations of the test score distribution. This is shown not to be due to the fact that friends tend to be of the same gender or to a higher frequency of interactions among friends.
    Keywords: education; Gender; learning; Social interactions
    JEL: I25 J16 O12
    Date: 2018–10
  6. By: Aislinn Bohren (Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania); Alex Imas (Department of Social and Decision Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University); Michael Rosenberg (Wayfair)
    Abstract: We model the dynamics of discrimination and show how its evolution can identify the underlying source. We test these theoretical predictions in a ï¬ eld experiment on a large online platform where users post content that is evaluated by other users on the platform. We assign posts to accounts that exogenously vary by gender and evaluation histories. With no prior evaluations, women face signiï¬ cant discrimination. However, following a sequence of positive evaluations, the direction of discrimination reverses: women’s posts are favored over men’s. Interpreting these results through the lens of our model, this dynamic reversal implies discrimination driven by biased beliefs.
    Keywords: Discrimination, Dynamic Behavior, Field Experiment
    JEL: J16 D83 D9
    Date: 2018–07–01
  7. By: Tamm, Marcus
    Abstract: This study analyzes the effect of fathers' parental leave-taking on the time fathers spend with their children and on mothers' and fathers' labor supply. Fathers' leave-taking is highly selective and the identification of causal effects relies on within-father differences in leave-taking for first and higher order children that were triggered by a policy reform promoting more gender equality in leave-taking. Results show that even short periods of fathers' parental leave may have long-lasting effects on fathers' involvement in childcare and housework. Effects on maternal labor supply are also significantly positive but do not persist over time.
    Keywords: parental leave,childcare,female labor supply,gender differences,policy evaluation
    JEL: H31 J13 J22
    Date: 2018

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