Gender and Performance in Collaborative Research: Evidence From Student Teams

Brown Bag Seminar

Max Coveney

Thursday 21 Oct 2021, 12:00 - 13:00
Kitchen/hall on floor E1
E Building
Campus Woudestein
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Research is increasingly a collaborative team exercise involving multiple researchers, yet little is known about how the composition of such teams affects their research output.

This paper examines how the gender composition of research teams influences their performance. We take advantage of a field experiment in which first-year economics students are randomly paired together and perform research-like tasks. We find large differences in research performance, as measured by the grades they receive, by gender composition. All-male teams are significantly outperformed by both mixed and all-female research teams. These differences remain even when comprehensively controlling for the individual research aptitude of the group members. No comparable compositional effect is found for other characteristics, such as ethnicity and socioeconomic status.

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