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Gender Stereotyping in Academia: Evidence from Economics Job Market Rumors Forum

56 Pages Posted: 11 Oct 2017 Last revised: 27 Dec 2017

Alice Wu

Princeton University - Center for Health and Wellbeing

Date Written: December 2017

Abstract

Stereotyping, the process of ascribing characteristics based on group membership, can exaggerate the contrast between in-group and out-group and foster an unwelcoming atmosphere. This paper examines the existence and extent of gender stereotyping on Economics Job Market Rumors, an anonymous online forum with academic and professional purposes. First, I use a Lasso Logistic model to directly capture the gender stereotyped language. Discussions about women tend to focus more on physical appearance or family information, whereas discussions about men are more on their academic or professional aspects. The topic analysis provides further evidence on this finding from a more aggregate perspective. In addition, I develop an econometric framework to study gender stereotyping in the dynamics of a conversation. I find that there is a significantly stronger deviation from an Academic/Professional focus when there is a prior mention of women; in contrast, the deviation from a Personal/Physical topic is stronger if the prior post is about men rather than women. Last, female economists tend to receive more attention online than their male counterparts, a pattern that further emphasizes the need to reduce stereotyping and maintain an inclusive environment.

JEL Classification: J16, J7

Suggested Citation

Wu, Alice, Gender Stereotyping in Academia: Evidence from Economics Job Market Rumors Forum (December 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3051462 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3051462

Alice Wu (Contact Author)

Princeton University - Center for Health and Wellbeing ( email )

Woodrow Wilson School
Princeton, NJ 08544
United States

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