Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 26 June 2022

Abstract and Keywords

Despite a policy push toward equality, substantial gender gaps in earnings and vertical gender segregation persist in the labor market. Studies point to gender-specific occupational sorting as one of the primary explanatory factors. But why do men and women sort into different careers? In this chapter, we document the evidence that suggests that gender differences along four behavioral traits may offer a plausible explanation. Specifically, the consensus in the literature is that women, on average, exhibit greater risk aversion, lower levels of competitiveness, and less desire to negotiate as compared to men. Gender differences in social preferences are less robust, but women appear to be more sensitive to social context and framing. Importantly, there is no conclusive evidence on whether these differences are inherent or societal for any of the individual traits, although most studies point to the latter.

Keywords: gender, experiments, labor, risk preferences, competitiveness, negotiation, social preferences

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.