Can Barely Winning Lead to Losing? Evidence for a Substantial Gender Gap in Psychological Momentum

27 Pages Posted: 15 Dec 2021 Last revised: 9 May 2022

See all articles by Mario Lackner

Mario Lackner

Johannes Kepler University Linz

Michael Weichselbaumer

Vienna University of Economics and Business

Date Written: May 9, 2022

Abstract

We use data from professional tennis to measure the causal effect of past on current performance for women and men. Identification relies on exogenous shocks to the probability of facing a contested game, which is a previous stage of competition with strong resistance. There are fundamental gender differences: whereas men’s performance is unaffected by previously experiencing and winning a contested game, women experience a sizeable deterioration of performance after barely winning the previous stage. This result is linked to gender differences in negative psychological momentum. Detailed analysis reveals heterogeneous effects by experience, ability and contest progression.

Keywords: Performance feedback, relative performance, process feedback, gender differences, psychological momentum

JEL Classification: J16, M52

Suggested Citation

Lackner, Mario and Weichselbaumer, Michael, Can Barely Winning Lead to Losing? Evidence for a Substantial Gender Gap in Psychological Momentum (May 9, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3985125 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3985125

Mario Lackner (Contact Author)

Johannes Kepler University Linz ( email )

Altenbergerstr. 69
A-4040 Linz, Uper Austria 4040
Austria

Michael Weichselbaumer

Vienna University of Economics and Business ( email )

Welthandelsplatz 1
Vienna, Wien 1020
Austria

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
63
Abstract Views
424
Rank
641,402
PlumX Metrics