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CANCELED – Roberto WEBER (University of Zurich) – "Continuous Gender, Sex and Economic Decision Making"

November 26, 2019 @ 11:30 am - 12:45 pm
CANCELED The Microeconometrics Seminar: Every Tuesday at 12:15 pm.
Time: 11:30 am – 12:45 pm Warning ! modified schedules
Date: 26 th of November 2019
Place: Room 3001
Roberto WEBER (University of Zurich) – “Continuous Gender, Sex and Economic Decision Making”

Abstract: A large literature documents differences in economic decision-making and preferences between men and women. In comparison to men, women are generally more risk-averse, less overconfident, less competitive, and more likely to prioritize equality over efficiency. Economic and social preferences affect individual behavior and thereby real-life outcomes on a wide range of dimensions, such as study and career choices, health behaviors, and wealth accumulation. The economic approach has largely relied on investigating the extent to which biological sex—i.e., whether an individual was born male or female—is correlated with a profile of basic preferences that may then drive economic choices. This is natural, given that much administrative economic data contains biological sex as an individual characteristic. However, a substantial body of research in related fields, such as sociology, has long argued that “gender” represents a broader spectrum of characteristics that should be identified along continuous dimensions (Bem, 1974 ; Magliozzi, Saperstein and Westbrook, 2016). The widespread use of such measures in gender research raises the possibility that continuous gender measures may provide additional explanatory power for understanding economic preferences and behaviors. In this study, we ask the question : Does a self-reported measure of continuous gender identity explain variation in economic behavior beyond a binary indicator for biological sex ? We study this empirically in two parts. First, we conduct an online survey to validate selected measures of non-binary gender developed in previous sociological and psychological research and test the validity of a new single unidimensional question. Second, we conduct a laboratory experiment to measure preferences and beliefs in an incentivized manner and test whether a continuous gender measure validated in the first step can predict economic behavior.

With Anne Ardila Brenøe (University of Zurich) and Eva Ranehill (University of Gothenburg)


Xavier D’HAULTFOEUILLE (Laboratoire de Microéconométrie-CREST)
Benoît SCHMUTZ (Laboratoire de Microéconométrie-CREST)