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URPP Equality of Opportunity

Gender Identity and Economic Decision Making

This project focuses on individuals’ self-perceptions in terms of group belonging and inequality, their determinants, and their implications for economic and political behavior. We explore an alternative to the traditional binary gender classification of 'male' vs. 'female'. While economic preferences and outcomes differ significantly between these groups, there is an even larger variance within each group. We study whether a non-binary gender classification based on individuals' self-perceived femininity and masculinity has a stronger predictive value for economic preferences and behavior. This ambitious project will conduct incentivized laboratory experiments to measure risk attitudes, competitiveness, preference for equality over efficiency, and overconfidence. The reason to study these specific preference measures is that previous research has often documented and discussed systematic gender differences in these domains. In surveys, we want to replicate the economic measures from the laboratory experiments and to measure gender role attitudes, self-efficacy, preferences for job attributes (e.g. social impact, prestige, high earnings, work-life balance), and prosociality.


Anne Brenoe

Prof. Anne Brenøe
Project Leader
Department of Economics

Data used

We have conducted incentivized experiments among ETH/UZH students to assess economic preferences and measure continuous gender identity (CGI).
We have also conducted a survey among Swiss teenagers about their occupational preferences and their CGI. Finally, we have surveyed US adults about their labor market outcomes, family situation, and CGI.

For further information about the project and data availability please contact: