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Gender differences in competition emerge early in life

Author

Listed:
  • Matthias Sutter
  • Daniela R?tzler

Abstract

We study gender differences in the willingness to compete in a large-scale experiment with 1,035 children and teenagers, aged three to eighteen years. Using an easy math task for children older than eight years and a running task for the younger ones we find that boys are much more likely to enter a tournament than girls across the whole age spectrum considered here. This gender gap is observed already with three-year olds, indicating that gender differences in competitiveness emerge very early in life. The gap is robust to controlling for gender differences in risk attitudes and overconfidence.

Suggested Citation

  • Matthias Sutter & Daniela R?tzler, 2010. "Gender differences in competition emerge early in life," Working Papers 2010-14, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
  • Handle: RePEc:inn:wpaper:2010-14
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Matthias Sutter & Francesco Feri & Martin G. Kocher & Peter Martinsson & Katarina Nordblom & Daniela R?tzler, 2010. "Social preferences in childhood and adolescence ? A large-scale experiment," Working Papers 2010-13, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Competition; gender gap; experiment; children; teenagers;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles

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