Category ArchiveCompetitiveness and Career Choices

Gender, Competitiveness and Career Choices

Gender differences in education and labor market outcomes, though greatly reduced, have remained ubiquitous. To understand gender differences in these outcomes, psychological attributes are commonly discussed as potential explanations. While the last decade saw a flurry of laboratory research documenting gender differences in psychological attributes, there has been no satisfactory direct evidence linking them to education and labor market outcomes. To address this gap, this paper examines how education is associated with a measure of competitiveness, which is an attribute for which large gender differences in the laboratory have been widely documented (see Croson and Gneezy, 2009 and Niederle and Vesterlund, 2011). Through in-class experiments we collected data on the competitiveness of high school students which we merged with information about their subsequent education choices. With this data we demonstrate that competitiveness significantly correlates

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