Women Will Compete Against Self, but Not Others, to Improve Performance
A woman is less likely to choose competition than a man, even when she performs equally well, unless competing with herself for a better outcome, according to a new study from the University of Pennsylvania, George Mason University and the German Institute for Economic Research or DIW.
Coren Apicella, an assistant professor of psychology, teamed up with Johanna Mollerstrom of DIW and Elif Demiral of George Mason to conduct the research, a two-part study with a lab and online component.
Overall, they determined that “women are just as focused as men on self-improvement and mastery; they want to get better,” Apicella says. “But they shy away from competing against others.”
The researchers will publish their results in AER: Papers and Proceedings, the journal of the American Economic Association.
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