Gender Differences in COVID-19 Related Attitudes and Behavior: Evidence from a Panel Survey in Eight OECD Countries
37 Pages Posted: 15 Jun 2020 Last revised: 24 Jun 2020
Date Written: June 2020
Using original data from two waves of a survey conducted in March and April 2020 in eight OECD countries (N = 21,649), we show that women are more likely to see COVID-19 as a very serious health problem, to agree with restraining public policy measures adopted in response to it, and to comply with them. Gender differences in attitudes and behavior are substantial in all countries, robust to controlling for a large set of sociodemographic, employment, psychological, and behavioral factors, and only partially mitigated for individuals who cohabit or have direct exposure to COVID-19. The results are not driven by differential social desirability bias. They carry important implications for the spread of the pandemic and may contribute to explain gender differences in vulnerability to it.
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