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The emergence of male leadership in competitive environments

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  • Reuben, Ernesto
  • Rey-Biel, Pedro
  • Sapienza, Paola
  • Zingales, Luigi

Abstract

We present evidence from an experiment in which groups select a leader to compete against the leaders of other groups in a real-effort task that they have all performed in the past. We find that women are selected much less often as leaders than is suggested by their individual past performance. We study three potential explanations for the underrepresentation of women, namely, gender differences in overconfidence concerning past performance, in the willingness to exaggerate past performance to the group, and in the reaction to monetary incentives. We find that men's overconfidence is the driving force behind the observed prevalence of male representation.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

Volume (Year): 83 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 111-117

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:83:y:2012:i:1:p:111-117

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo

Related research

Keywords: Discrimination; Gender gap; Glass ceiling; Overconfidence; Leadership;

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References

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  1. Ulrike Malmendier & Geoffrey Tate, 2005. "CEO Overconfidence and Corporate Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, American Finance Association, vol. 60(6), pages 2661-2700, December.
  2. Uri Gneezy, 2005. "Deception: The Role of Consequences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 95(1), pages 384-394, March.
  3. Marianne Bertrand & Kevin F. Hallock, 2000. "The Gender Gap in Top Corporate Jobs," NBER Working Papers 7931, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Uri Gneezy & Muriel Niederle & Aldo Rustichini, 2003. "Performance In Competitive Environments: Gender Differences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 118(3), pages 1049-1074, August.
  5. Bowles, Hannah Riley & Babcock, Linda & Lai, Lei, 2007. "Social incentives for gender differences in the propensity to initiate negotiations: Sometimes it does hurt to ask," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 84-103, May.
  6. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2005. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," NBER Working Papers 11474, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Uri Gneezy & Aldo Rustichini, 2004. "Gender and competition at a young age," Framed Field Experiments 00151, The Field Experiments Website.
  8. Booth, Alison L., 2009. "Gender and competition," Labour Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 16(6), pages 599-606, December.
  9. Malmendier, Ulrike M. & Tate, Geoffrey, 2003. "Who Makes Acquisitions? CEO Overconfidence and the Market's Reaction," Research Papers 1798, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  10. Justin Wolfers, 2006. "Diagnosing Discrimination: Stock Returns and CEO Gender," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 4(2-3), pages 531-541, 04-05.
  11. Balafoutas, Loukas & Sutter, Matthias, 2010. "Gender, Competition and the Efficiency of Policy Intervention," Working Papers in Economics 450, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  12. Uri Gneezy & Kenneth Leonard & John List, 2009. "Gender differences in competition: Evidence from a matrilineal and a patriarchal society," Artefactual Field Experiments 00049, The Field Experiments Website.
  13. Günther, Christina & Ekinci, Neslihan Arslan & Schwieren, Christiane & Strobel, Martin, 2010. "Women can't jump?--An experiment on competitive attitudes and stereotype threat," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 395-401, September.
  14. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
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Citations

Blog mentions

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  1. The Emergence of Male Leadership in Competitive Environments
    by maximorossi in NEP-LTV blog on 2010-11-30 13:35:21
Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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Cited by:
  1. Ernesto Reuben & Matthew Wiswall & Basit Zafar, 2013. "Preferences and biases in educational choices and labor market expectations: shrinking the black box of gender," Staff Reports, Federal Reserve Bank of New York 627, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Thoma, Carmen, 2013. "Is Underconfidence Favored over Overconfidence? An Experiment on the Perception of a Biased Self-Assessment," Discussion Papers in Economics 17460, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  3. Seda Ertac & Mehmet Y. Gurdal, 2012. "Personality, Group Decision-Making and Leadership," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum 1227, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
  4. Casas-Arce, Pablo & Saiz, Albert, 2011. "Women and Power: Unwilling, Ineffective, or Held Back?," IZA Discussion Papers 5645, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Ewers, Mara, 2012. "Information and Competition Entry," IZA Discussion Papers 6411, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Brunello, Giorgio & De Paola, Maria, 2012. "Leadership at School: Does the Gender of Siblings Matter?," IZA Discussion Papers 6976, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  7. Schlömer-Laufen, Nadine & Kay, Rosemarie, 2013. "Zum Einfluss des Geschlechts des Übergebers auf die Wahl des familieninternen Nachfolgers: Eine theoretische und empirische Analyse in deutschen Familienunternehmen," Working Papers 01/13, Institut für Mittelstandsforschung (IfM) Bonn.
  8. Jordi Brandts & Valeska Groenert & Christina Rott, 2012. "The Impact of Advice on Women's and Men's Selection into Competition," Working Papers 663, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  9. Dato, Simon & Nieken, Petra, 2013. "Gender Differences in Competition and Sabotage," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79750, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  10. Ewers, Mara & Zimmermann, Florian, 2012. "Image and Misreporting," IZA Discussion Papers 6425, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  11. Claire Schaffnit Chatterjee, 2010. "Towards Gender-Balanced Leadership: What has not Worked and What May?," Working Papers id:3241, eSocialSciences.
  12. Pikulina, E.S. & Renneboog, L.D.R. & Horst, J.R. ter & Tobler, P.N., 2013. "Overconfidence, Effort, and Investment," Discussion Paper, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research 2013-035, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  13. Jordi Brandts & Valeska Groener & Christina Rott, 2012. "The impact of advice on women's and men's selection into competition," UFAE and IAE Working Papers, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC) 912.12, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).

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