The Boy Crisis: Experimental Evidence on the Acceptance of Males Falling Behind

88 Pages Posted: 8 Mar 2019

See all articles by Alexander W. Cappelen

Alexander W. Cappelen

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Ranveig Falch

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Bertil Tungodden

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics

Date Written: March 1, 2019

Abstract

The ‘boy crisis’ prompts the question of whether people interpret inequalities differently depending on whether males or females are lagging behind. We study this question in a novel large-scale distributive experiment involving more than 5,000 Americans. Our data provide strong evidence of a gender bias against low-performing males, particularly among female participants. A large set of additional treatments establishes that the gender bias reflects statistical fairness discrimination. The study provides novel evidence on the nature of discrimination and on how males falling behind are perceived by society.

Keywords: gender bias, boy crisis, statistical fairness discrimination, large-scale experiment

JEL Classification: C91, D63, J16

Suggested Citation

Cappelen, Alexander W. and Falch, Ranveig and Tungodden, Bertil, The Boy Crisis: Experimental Evidence on the Acceptance of Males Falling Behind (March 1, 2019). NHH Dept. of Economics Discussion Paper No. 06/2019. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3348981 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3348981

Alexander W. Cappelen

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics ( email )

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen
Norway

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Ranveig Falch

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics ( email )

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen
Norway

Bertil Tungodden (Contact Author)

Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) - Department of Economics ( email )

Helleveien 30
N-5035 Bergen
Norway

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