IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/jeborg/v92y2013icp284-303.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

How competitive are female professionals? A tale of identity conflict

Author

Listed:
  • Cadsby, C. Bram
  • Servátka, Maroš
  • Song, Fei

Abstract

We develop and test experimentally the argument that gender/family and/or professional identities, activated through priming, influence preference for competition. We focus on female professionals for whom these identities may conflict and male professionals for whom they may be reinforcing. We primed MBA-student participants by administering questionnaires concerning either gender/family or professional issues. Subsequently, participants undertook a real-effort task and chose between piece-rate and competitive-tournament compensation. For females, professional priming resulted in a significantly greater preference for competition than gender/family priming. Priming had significantly different effects for males. This contrast highlights an identity conflict for female professionals, not present for males.

Suggested Citation

  • Cadsby, C. Bram & Servátka, Maroš & Song, Fei, 2013. "How competitive are female professionals? A tale of identity conflict," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 284-303.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:92:y:2013:i:c:p:284-303
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2013.05.009
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0167268113001455
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Wendy Sigle-Rushton & Jane Waldfogel, 2007. "Motherhood and women's earnings in Anglo-American, Continental European, and Nordic Countries," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(2), pages 55-91.
    2. David Gill & Victoria Prowse, 2014. "Gender differences and dynamics in competition: The role of luck," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 5, pages 351-376, July.
    3. Shelley Phipps & Peter Burton & Lynn Lethbridge, 2001. "In and out of the labour market: long-term income consequences of child-related interruptions to women's paid work," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 34(2), pages 411-429, May.
    4. Sutter, Matthias & Glätzle-Rützler, Daniela, 2010. "Gender Differences in Competition Emerge Early in Life," IZA Discussion Papers 5015, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Stephen Benard & Shelley Correll & In Paik, 2007. "Getting a job: Is there a motherhood penalty?," Natural Field Experiments 00227, The Field Experiments Website.
    6. Daniel J. Benjamin & James J. Choi & A. Joshua Strickland, 2010. "Social Identity and Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1913-1928, September.
    7. 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, vol. 75(3), pages 395-401, September.
    8. Uri Gneezy & Muriel Niederle & Aldo Rustichini, 2003. "Performance in Competitive Environments: Gender Differences," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(3), pages 1049-1074.
    9. Uri Gneezy & Kenneth L. Leonard & John A. List, 2009. "Gender Differences in Competition: Evidence From a Matrilineal and a Patriarchal Society," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 77(5), pages 1637-1664, September.
    10. José Molina & Víctor Montuenga, 2009. "The Motherhood Wage Penalty in Spain," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 237-251, September.
    11. Marianne Bertrand & Claudia Goldin & Lawrence F. Katz, 2010. "Dynamics of the Gender Gap for Young Professionals in the Financial and Corporate Sectors," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 228-255, July.
    12. Deborah J. Anderson & Melissa Binder & Kate Krause, 2002. "The Motherhood Wage Penalty: Which Mothers Pay It and Why?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(2), pages 354-358, May.
    13. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2006. "The U.S. Gender Pay Gap in the 1990S: Slowing Convergence," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(1), pages 45-66, October.
    14. Glenn W. Harrison & John A. List, 2004. "Field Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1009-1055, December.
    15. Vandegrift, Donald & Yavas, Abdullah, 2009. "Men, women, and competition: An experimental test of behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 554-570, October.
    16. Müller, Julia & Schwieren, Christiane, 2012. "Can personality explain what is underlying women’s unwillingness to compete?," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 448-460.
    17. Kunze, Astrid & Ejrnæs, Mette, 2004. "Wage Dips and Drops around First Birth," IZA Discussion Papers 1011, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    18. Doris Weichselbaumer & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2005. "A Meta-Analysis of the International Gender Wage Gap," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 479-511, July.
    19. Roland Bénabou & Jean Tirole, 2011. "Identity, Morals, and Taboos: Beliefs as Assets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(2), pages 805-855.
    20. Nabanita Datta Gupta & Anders Poulsen & Marie Claire Villeval, 2013. "Gender Matching And Competitiveness: Experimental Evidence," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(1), pages 816-835, January.
    21. Balafoutas, Loukas & Sutter, Matthias, 2010. "Gender, Competition and the Efficiency of Policy Intervention," Working Papers in Economics 450, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    22. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
    23. Jeffrey A. Flory & Andreas Leibbrandt & John A. List, 2010. "Do Competitive Work Places Deter Female Workers? A Large-Scale Natural Field Experiment on Gender Differences in Job-Entry Decisions," NBER Working Papers 16546, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    24. Uri Gneezy & Aldo Rustichini, 2004. "Gender and Competition at a Young Age," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 377-381, May.
    25. Polachek, Solomon William, 1981. "Occupational Self-Selection: A Human Capital Approach to Sex Differences in Occupational Structure," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 63(1), pages 60-69, February.
    26. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
    27. Muriel Niederle & Carmit Segal & Lise Vesterlund, 2013. "How Costly Is Diversity? Affirmative Action in Light of Gender Differences in Competitiveness," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(1), pages 1-16, May.
    28. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000. "Gender Differences in Pay," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 75-99, Fall.
    29. Kaushik Basu, 2005. "Racial conflict and the malignancy of identity," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 3(3), pages 221-241, December.
    30. Waldfogel, Jane, 1998. "The Family Gap for Young Women in the United States and Britain: Can Maternity Leave Make a Difference?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(3), pages 505-545, July.
    31. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2002. "Identity and Schooling: Some Lessons for the Economics of Education," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1167-1201, December.
    32. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2005. "Identity and the Economics of Organizations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 9-32, Winter.
    33. Lundberg, Shelly & Rose, Elaina, 2000. "Parenthood and the earnings of married men and women," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(6), pages 689-710, November.
    34. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2007. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1067-1101.
    35. Balafoutas, Loukas & Kerschbamer, Rudolf & Sutter, Matthias, 2012. "Distributional preferences and competitive behavior," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 125-135.
    36. Edward C. Norton & Hua Wang & Chunrong Ai, 2004. "Computing interaction effects and standard errors in logit and probit models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 4(2), pages 154-167, June.
    37. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2007. "Changes in the Labor Supply Behavior of Married Women: 1980–2000," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25, pages 393-438.
    38. Sandra E. Black & Philip E. Strahan, 2002. "Entrepreneurship and Bank Credit Availability," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(6), pages 2807-2833, December.
    39. Joshi, Heather & Paci, Pierella & Waldfogel, Jane, 1999. "The Wages of Motherhood: Better or Worse?," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(5), pages 543-564, September.
    40. Jane Waldfogel, 1998. "Understanding the "Family Gap" in Pay for Women with Children," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(1), pages 137-156, Winter.
    41. Roy Chen & Yan Chen, 2011. "The Potential of Social Identity for Equilibrium Selection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(6), pages 2562-2589, October.
    42. Shelly Lundberg & Elaina Rose, 2002. "The Effects Of Sons And Daughters On Men'S Labor Supply And Wages," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(2), pages 251-268, May.
    43. Basu, Kaushik, 2010. "The Moral Basis Of Prosperity And Oppression: Altruism, Other-Regarding Behaviour And Identity," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(02), pages 189-216, July.
    44. Yan Chen & Sherry Xin Li, 2009. "Group Identity and Social Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 431-457, March.
    45. Yongmin Chen & Ruqu Wang, 2004. "Equilibrium Selling Mechanisms," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 5(2), pages 335-355, November.
    46. Marie-Pierre Dargnies, 2009. "Does team competition eliminate the gender gap in entry in competitive environments?," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 09006, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
    47. Curtis R. Price, 2012. "Gender, Competition, and Managerial Decisions," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 58(1), pages 114-122, January.
    48. Andrew Healy & Jennifer Pate, 2011. "Can Teams Help to Close the Gender Competition Gap?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 121(555), pages 1192-1204, September.
    49. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2008. "Identity, Supervision, and Work Groups," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 212-217, May.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Goodall, Amanda H. & Osterloh, Margit, 2015. "Women Have to Enter the Leadership Race to Win: Using Random Selection to Increase the Supply of Women into Senior Positions," IZA Discussion Papers 9331, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. repec:eee:deveco:v:129:y:2017:i:c:p:47-57 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Estrin, Saul & Stephan, Ute & Vujic, Suncica, 2014. "Do Women Earn Less Even as Social Entrepreneurs?," IZA Discussion Papers 8650, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Buser, Thomas & Ranehill, Eva & van Veldhuizen, Roel, 2017. "Gender Differences in Willingness to Compete: The Role of Public Observability," Rationality and Competition Discussion Paper Series 40, CRC TRR 190 Rationality and Competition.
    5. Auspurg, Katrin & Iacovou, Maria & Nicoletti, Cheti, 2014. "Housework Share between Partners: Experimental Evidence on Gender Identity," IZA Discussion Papers 8569, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Chowdhury, Subhasish M. & Jeon, Joo Young & Ramalingam, Abhijit, 2016. "Identity and group conflict," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 107-121.
    7. John Ifcher & Homa Zarghamee, 2016. "Do Gender-Variant Preferences For Competition Persist In The Absence Of Performance?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 54(4), pages 1918-1930, October.
    8. Vecci, Joseph & Zelinsky, Tomas, 2016. "Social Identity and Role Models," Working Papers in Economics 672, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
    9. Seo-Young Cho, 2017. "Explaining Gender Differences in Confidence and Overconfidence in Math," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201701, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    10. Vandegrift, Donald & Duke, Kristen, 2015. "Competitive behavior, impact on others, and the number of competitors," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 37-44.
    11. repec:spr:jesaex:v:3:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s40881-017-0045-y is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Aurelie Dariel & Curtis Kephart & Nikos Nikiforakis & Christina Zenker, 2017. "Emirati women do not shy away from competition: evidence from a patriarchal society in transition," Journal of the Economic Science Association, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 3(2), pages 121-136, December.
    13. Cortes, Patricia & Pan, Jessica, 2017. "Occupation and Gender," IZA Discussion Papers 10672, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Bedi, Arjun S. & Majilla, Tanmoy & Rieger, Matthias, 2018. "Gender Norms and the Motherhood Penalty: Experimental Evidence from India," IZA Discussion Papers 11360, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    15. Alain Cohn & Michel André Maréchal, 2016. "Priming in economics," ECON - Working Papers 226, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
    16. Drupp, Moritz A. & Khadjavi, Menusch & Riekhof, Marie-Catherine & Voss, Rüdiger, 2017. "Professional identity and the gender gap in risk-taking: Evidence from a field experiment with scientists," Kiel Working Papers 2077, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Gender; Competitiveness; Identity conflict; Priming; Experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:92:y:2013:i:c:p:284-303. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.