We use lab experiments and field data from the Dutch Math Olympiad to show that women are more likely than men to stop competing if they lose. In a math competition in the lab, women are much less likely than men to choose competition again after losing in the first round. In the Math Olympiad, girls, but not boys, who fail to make the second round are less likely to compete again one year later. This gender difference in the reaction to competition outcomes may help to explain why fewer women make it to the top in business and academia.
Buser, Thomas, and Huaiping Yuan.
"Do Women Give Up Competing More Easily? Evidence from the Lab and the Dutch Math Olympiad."
American Economic Journal: Applied Economics,
Design of Experiments: General
Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
Micro-Based Behavioral Economics: Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination