Social Identity and Governance: The Behavioral Response to Female Leaders

45 Pages Posted: 3 Feb 2015 Last revised: 18 Jan 2016

See all articles by Lata Gangadharan

Lata Gangadharan

Monash University

Tarun Jain

Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad

Pushkar Maitra

Monash University - Department of Economics

Joe Vecci

Gothenburg University

Date Written: November 26, 2015

Abstract

This paper uses data from artefactual field experiments and surveys conducted in 61 villages in India to examine whether men and women respond differently to women as leaders. We investigate the extent to which behavior towards female leaders is influenced by experience with women in leadership positions. We find evidence of significant male backlash against female leaders, which can be attributed to the transgression of social norms and in particular, a violation of male identity, when women are assigned to positions of leadership through gender based quotas. Increased exposure to female leaders reduces the extent of bias.

Keywords: Gender, Governance, Leaders, Affirmative action, Artefactual field experiment, India

JEL Classification: O12, C93, J16

Suggested Citation

Gangadharan, Lata and Jain, Tarun and Maitra, Pushkar and Vecci, Joe, Social Identity and Governance: The Behavioral Response to Female Leaders (November 26, 2015). Indian School of Business Research Paper Series. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2558975 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2558975

Lata Gangadharan

Monash University ( email )

23 Innovation Walk
Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3800
Australia

Tarun Jain (Contact Author)

Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad ( email )

Pushkar Maitra

Monash University - Department of Economics ( email )

Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3
Australia

Joe Vecci

Gothenburg University ( email )

Sweden
767851248 (Phone)

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