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An Economic Model of the Evolution of the Gender Performance Ratio in Individual Sports

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  • Dupuy Arnaud

    (METEOR)

Abstract

This paper shows that the gender world record ratio in four disciplines, i.e. marathon, triple jump, pole vault and 800 meters, follows a S-shape over time. It is argued that this pattern is initiated by a sudden drop in the social barrier for women to participate in these disciplines. This drop in social barrier materializes –later- by the authorization for women to participate at major events, such as the Olympic Games, in these disciplines. The paper builds a simple economic model of sector self-selection and human capital accumulation with intrinsic disutility (social barriers) to participate in some sectors. As social barriers are removed in a sector, the Gender Performance Ratio is shown to follow a S-shape over time under very basic assumptions and calibrations. Ability self-selection, measured as the difference between mean ability of women in that sector and population mean, becomes more positive after removal of the social barrier.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR) in its series Research Memorandum with number 021.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:unm:umamet:2010021

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Keywords: microeconomics ;

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  1. Casey B. Mulligan & Yona Rubinstein, 2008. "Selection, Investment, and Women's Relative Wages Over Time," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 123(3), pages 1061-1110, August.
  2. Lalith Munasinghe & Brendan O'Flaherty & Stephan Danninger, 2001. "Globalization and the Rate of Technological Progress: What Track and Field Records Show," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(5), pages 1132-1149, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Frick, Bernd, 2011. "Gender differences in competitiveness: Empirical evidence from professional distance running," Labour Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 389-398, June.
  2. Böheim, René & Lackner, Mario, 2013. "Gender and Competition: Evidence from Jumping Competitions," IZA Discussion Papers 7243, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. Chang-Tai Hsieh & Erik Hurst & Charles I. Jones & Peter J. Klenow, 2013. "The Allocation of Talent and U.S. Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 18693, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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