The Unintended Consequences of #MeToo: Evidence from Research Collaborations

88 Pages Posted: 11 May 2022 Last revised: 17 Aug 2023

Date Written: May 10, 2022


How did #MeToo alter the cost of collaboration between women and men? I study research collaborations involving junior female academic economists and show they start fewer new research projects after #MeToo. The decline is driven largely by fewer collaborations with new male co-authors at the same institution. I show that the drop in collaborations is concentrated in universities where the perceived risk of sexual harassment accusations for men is high - that is, when both sexual harassment policies are more ambiguous exposing men to a larger variety of claims and the number of public sexual harassment incidents is high. The results suggest that the social movement is associated with increased cost of collaboration that disadvantaged the career opportunities of women.

Keywords: Corporate Culture, Corporate Governance, Gender, Social Movements, Regulations

JEL Classification: D91, D22, J7, J8, J16, J24

Suggested Citation

Gertsberg, Marina, The Unintended Consequences of #MeToo: Evidence from Research Collaborations (May 10, 2022). Available at SSRN: or

Marina Gertsberg (Contact Author)

The University of Melbourne ( email )

Parkville, 3010

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