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Choking under Pressure and Gender: Evidence from Professional Tennis

Author

Listed:
  • Cohen-Zada, Danny

    () (Ben Gurion University)

  • Krumer, Alex

    () (University of St. Gallen)

  • Rosenboim, Mosi

    () (Ben Gurion University)

  • Shapir, Offer Moshe

    () (New York University Shanghai)

Abstract

We exploit a unique setting in which two professionals compete in a real-life tennis contest with high monetary rewards in order to assess how men and women respond to competitive pressure. Comparing their performance in low-stakes versus high-stakes situations, we find that men consistently choke under competitive pressure, but with regard to women the results are mixed. Furthermore, even if women show a drop in performance in the more crucial stages of the match, it is in any event about 50% smaller than that of men. These findings are robust to different specifications and estimation strategies.

Suggested Citation

  • Cohen-Zada, Danny & Krumer, Alex & Rosenboim, Mosi & Shapir, Offer Moshe, 2017. "Choking under Pressure and Gender: Evidence from Professional Tennis," IZA Discussion Papers 10587, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10587
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    gender; performance; competitive pressure; tennis; choking;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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