Publications

2010
Bohnet, Iris, Benedikt Herrmann, and Richard Zeckhauser. “Trust and the Reference Points for Trustworthiness in Gulf and Western Countries”. Quarterly Journal of Economics 125.2 (2010): , 125, 2, 811-828. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Why is private investment so low in Gulf compared to Western countries? We investigate cross-regional differences in trust and reference points for trustworthiness as possible factors. Experiments controlling for cross-regional differences in institutions and beliefs about trustworthiness reveal that Gulf citizens pay much more than Westerners to avoid trusting, and hardly respond when returns to trusting change. These differences can be explained by subjects' gain/loss utility relative to their region's reference point for trustworthiness. The relation-based production of trust in the Gulf induces higher levels of trustworthiness, albeit within groups, than the rule-based interactions prevalent in the West.

trust_and_the_reference_points.pdf
2009
MacKenzie, Megan. “Securitization and Desecuritization: Female Soldiers and the Reconstruction of Women in PostConflict Sierra Leone”. Security Studies 18.2 (2009): , 18, 2, 241-261. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract
This article focuses on the construction of “soldier” and “victim” by post-conflict programs in Sierra Leone. Focusing on the absence of individual testimonies and interviews that inform representations of women and girls post-conflict, this article demonstrates that the ideal of the female war victim has limited the ways in which female combatants are addressed by disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) programs in Sierra Leone. It is argued that titles given to female soldiers such as “females associated with the war,” “dependents,” or “camp followers” reveal the reluctance of reintegration agencies to identify females who participated in war as soldiers. In addition, I argue that men and masculinity are securitized post-conflict while women—even when they act in highly securitized roles such as soldiers—are desecuritized and, in effect, de-emphasized in post-conflict policy making. The impact of this categorization has been that the reintegration process for men has been securitized, or emphasized as an essential element of the transition from war to peace. In contrast, the reintegration process for females has been deemed a social concern and has been moralized as a return to normal.
securitization_and_desecuritization.pdf
Nosek, Brian, et al.National differences in gender–science stereotypes predict national sex differences in science and math achievement”. PNAS 106.26 (2009): , 106, 26, 10593–10597. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

About 70% of more than half a million Implicit Association Tests completed by citizens of 34 countries revealed expected implicit stereotypes associating science with males more than with females. We discovered that nation-level implicit stereotypes predicted nation-level sex differences in 8th-grade science and mathematics achievement. Self-reported stereotypes did not provide additional predictive validity of the achievement gap. We suggest that implicit stereotypes and sex differences in science participation and performance are mutually reinforcing, contributing to the persistent gender gap in science engagement.

national_differences.pdf
Beaman, Lori, et al.Can Political Affirmative Action for Women Reduce Gender Bias?”. Vox 2009. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract
political_affirmative_vox.pdf
Ashraf, Nava. “Spousal Control and Intra-Household Decision Making: An Experimental Study in the Philippines”. American Economic Review 99.4 (2009): , 99, 4, 1245-77. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

I elicit causal effects of spousal observability and communication on financial choices of married individuals in the Philippines. When choices are private, men put money into their personal accounts. When choices are observable, men commit money to consumption for their own benefit. When required to communicate, men put money into their wives' account. These strong treatment effects on men, but not women, appear related more to control than to gender: men whose wives control household savings respond more strongly to the treatment and women whose husbands control savings exhibit the same response. Changes in information and communication interact with underlying control to produce mutable gender-specific outcomes.

spousal_control.pdf
Greig, Fiona, and Iris Bohnet. “Exploring gendered behavior in the field with experiments: Why public goods are provided by women in a Nairobi slum.”. Exploring gendered behavior in the field with experiments: Why public goods are provided by women in a Nairobi slum. 70.1-2 (2009): , 70, 1-2, 1-9. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Women, and particularly women in all-female groups, appear to be especially adept at providing public goods in developing countries. We use a one-shot Public Goods game to explore the effect of sex and a group's sex composition on the voluntary provision of public goods in a Nairobi slum. Sex heterogeneity hurts the voluntary provision of public goods because women—but not men—contribute less in mixed-sex than same-sex groups. Women contribute as much as men in same-sex groups. This result is driven by women's pessimism and men's optimism about others’ contributions in mixed-sex groups rather than by gendered social preferences.

1-s2.0-s016726810900002x-main.pdf
Beaman, Lori A, et al.Powerful Women: Does Exposure Reduce Bias?”. Quarterly Journal of Economics 124.4 (2009): , 124, 4, 1497-1540. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

We exploit random assignment of gender quotas for leadership positions on Indian village councils to show that prior exposure to a female leader is associated with electoral gains for women. After ten years of quotas, women are more likely to stand for, and win, elected positions in councils required to have a female chief councilor in the previous two elections. We provide experimental and survey evidence on one channel of influence—changes in voter attitudes. Prior exposure to a female chief councilor improves perceptions of female leader effectiveness and weakens stereotypes about gender roles in the public and domestic spheres.

Available on the Gender Action Portal:

powerfulwomen_finaljune08.pdf
2008
Brescoll, Victoria L, and Eric Luis Uhlmann. “Can an Angry Woman Get Ahead? Status Conferral, Gender, and Expression of Emotion in the Workplace.”. Psychological Science 19.3 (2008): , 19, 3, 268-275. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Three studies examined the relationships among anger, gender, and status conferral. As in prior research, men who expressed anger in a professional context were conferred higher status than men who expressed sadness. However, both male and female evaluators conferred lower status on angry female professionals than on angry male professionals. This was the case regardless of the actual occupational rank of the target, such that both a female trainee and a female CEO were given lower status if they expressed anger than if they did not. Whereas women's emotional reactions were attributed to internal characteristics (e.g., “she is an angry person,” “she is out of control”), men's emotional reactions were attributed to external circumstances. Providing an external attribution for the target person's anger eliminated the gender bias. Theoretical implications and practical applications are discussed.

emotion_workpalce.pdf
Field, Erica, and Rohini Pande. “Repayment Frequency and Default in Micro-Finance: Evidence from India”. Journal of European Economic Association Papers and Proceedings 6 .(2-3) (2008): , 6 , (2-3), 501-550. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

In stark contrast to bank debt contracts, most micro-finance contracts require that repayments start nearly immediately after loan disbursement and occur weekly thereafter. Even though economic theory suggests that a more flexible repayment schedule would benefit clients and potentially improve their repayment capacity, micro-finance practitioners argue that the fiscal discipline imposed by frequent repayment is critical to preventing loan default. In this paper we use data from a field experiment which randomized client assignment to a weekly or monthly repayment schedule and find no significant effect of type of repayment schedule on client delinquency or default. Our findings suggest that, among micro-finance clients who are willing to borrow at either weekly or monthly repayment schedules, a more flexible schedule can significantly lower transaction costs without increasing client default. (JEL: O12, O16, O22)

repayment_freq.pdf
Bowles, Hannah Riley, and Kathleen McGinn. “Chapter 2: Untapped Potential in the Study of Negotiation and Gender Inequality in Organizations”. The Academy of Management Annals. 1st ed. Routledge, 2008. 99-132. Web. Publisher's Version untapped_potential.pdf
Mansbridge, Jane, and Shauna L Shames. “Toward a Theory of Backlash: Dynamic Resistance and the Central Role of Power”. Politics & Gender 44 (2008): , 4, 4, 623-634. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

To understand backlash theoretically, we must first carve out an analytically useful term from the cluster of its common political associations. In colloquial usage, “backlash” denotes politically conservative reactions to progressive (or liberal) social or political change (Faludi 1991 is a classic in this vein). Here, however, we attempt a nonideological definition of backlash embedded in a more neutral approach to its study. In colloquial usage, backlash includes acts of genuine persuasion as well as of power. Here, however, we suggest that it may be analytically helpful to confine its meaning to acts of coercive power. We draw on the sociological literature on social movements and countermovements, as well as the political science literature on power, preferences, and interests. We focus mostly on examples drawn from the United States and relating to feminism and gender. We begin where the process of backlash itself begins, with power and a challenge to the status quo.

theory_of_backlash.pdf
2007
Sjoberg, Laura, and Caron E. Gentry. Mothers, Monsters, Whores: Women's Violence in Global Politics. 1st ed. London: Zed Books, 2007. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Mothers, Monsters, Whores provides an empirical study of women's violence in global politics. The book looks at military women who engage in torture; the Chechen 'Black Widows'; Middle Eastern suicide bombers; and the women who directed and participated in genocides in Bosnia and Rwanda. Sjoberg & Gentry analyse the biological, psychological and sexualized stereotypes through which these women are conventionally depicted, arguing that these are rooted in assumptions about what is 'appropriate' female behaviour. What these stereotypes have in common is that they all perceive women as having no agency in any sphere of life, from everyday choices to global political events.

This book is a major feminist re-evaluation of women's motivations and actions as perpetrators of political violence.
Sjoberg, Laura. “Agency, Militarized Femininity and Enemy Others: Observations From The War In Iraq”. International Feminist Journal of Politics 91 (2007): , 9, 1, 82-101. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract
In this era of the increasing importance of gender, many conflicting images of women populate news headlines and political discourses. In the 2003 war in Iraq, Americans saw images of a teenage woman as a war hero, of a female general in charge of a military prison where torture took place, of women who committed those abuses, of male victims of wartime sexual abuse and of the absence of gender in official government reactions to the torture at Abu Ghraib. I contend that several gendered stories from the 2003 war in Iraq demonstrate three major developments in militarized femininity in the United States: increasing sophistication of the ideal image of the woman soldier; stories of militarized femininity constructed in opposition to the gendered enemy; and evident tension between popular ideas of femininity and women’s agency in violence. I use the publicized stories of American women prisoners of war and American women prison guards to substantiate these observed developments.
agency_militarized_femininity.pdf
Hunt, Swanee. “Women's Vital Voices: The Costs of Exclusion in Eastern Europe”. Foreign Affairs 86.3 (2007): , 86, 3, 109-120. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

The advent of democracy in the former community states of Europe brings both much promise and, as we are learning much peril. For millions, the complexion of life has evolved from red to rose-colored to raw. A monolithic nemesis has been replaced by a perplexing variety of threats to stability in this fragile region, with expressions of democracy frequently drowned out by the noises of intolerance and repression.

women's_voices.pdf
Baker, Laurence C, et al.Differences in neonatal mortality among whites and Asian American subgroups: evidence from California”. Archives of pediatrics & adolescent medicine 161.1 (2007): , 161, 1, 69-76. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

OBJECTIVE:

To obtain information about health outcomes in neonates in 9 subgroups of the Asian population in the United States.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional comparison of outcomes for births to mothers of Cambodian, Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Japanese, Korean, Laotian, Thai, and Vietnamese origin and for births to non-Hispanic white mothers. Regression models were used to compare neonatal mortality across groups before and after controlling for various risk factors.

SETTING:

All California births between January 1,1991, and December 31, 2001.

PARTICIPANTS:

More than 2.3 million newborn infants.

MAIN EXPOSURE:

Racial and ethnic groups.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Neonatal mortality (death within 28 days of birth).

RESULTS:

The unadjusted mortality rate for births to non-Hispanic white mothers was 2.0 per 1000. The unadjusted mortality rate for births to Chinese and Japanese mothers was significantly lower (Chinese: 1.2 per 1000, P<.001; Japanese: 1.2 per 1000, P=.004), and for births to Korean mothers the rate was significantly higher (2.7 per 1000, P=.003). For infants of Chinese mothers, observed risk factors explain the differences observed in unadjusted data. For infants of Cambodian, Japanese, Korean, and Thai mothers, differences persist or widen after risk factors are considered. After risk adjustment, infants of Cambodian, Japanese, and Korean mothers have significantly lower neonatal mortality rates compared with infants born to non-Hispanic white mothers (adjusted odds ratios, 0.58 for infants of Cambodian mothers, 0.67 for infants of Japanese mothers, and 0.69 for infants of Korean mothers; all P<.05); infants of Thai mothers have higher neonatal mortality rates (adjusted odds ratio, 1.89; P<.05).


CONCLUSIONS:

There are significant variations in neonatal mortality between subgroups of the Asian American population that are not entirely explained by differences in observable risk factors. Efforts to improve clinical care that treat Asian Americans as a homogeneous group may miss important opportunities for improving infant health in specific subgroups

Mansbridge, Jane. “Feminism”. A Companion to Contemporary Political Philosophy. 2nd ed. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell, 2007. Web. Publisher's Version
Mansbridge, Jane, and Katherine Flaster. “The cultural politics of everyday discourse: The case of “male chauvinist””. Critical Sociology 33.4 (2007): , 33, 4, 627-660. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

The spread of the term “male chauvinist,” coined in the United States around 1934, reveals the crucial work done in a social movement — in this case the second wave of American feminism — by what we call “everyday activists.” Everyday activists may not interact with the world of formal politics, but they take actions in their own lives to redress injustices that a contemporary social movement has made salient. The interplay between organized and everyday activists creates an evolutionary dynamic of “organized activist variation” and “everyday activist selection.” Organized activists in tightly-knit and protected enclaves (such as those in the American Communist Party in the 1930s or the feminist movement in the late 1960s) produce a cornucopia of counter-hegemonic concepts. Everyday activists then select the concepts they will use, primarily for the purpose of persuasion, in everyday talk.

male_chauvinist.pdf
Hong, Kessely, and Iris Bohnet. “Status and distrust: The relevance of inequality and betrayal aversion”. Journal of Economic Psychology 28.2 (2007): , 28, 2, 197–213. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Trust involves a willingness to accept vulnerability, comprised of the risk of being worse off than by not trusting, the risk of being worse off than the trusted party (disadvantageous inequality), and the risk of being betrayed by the trusted party. We examine how people’s status, focusing on sex, race, age and religion, affects their willingness to accept these three risks. We experimentally measure people’s willingness to accept risk in a decision problem, a risky dictator game, and a trust game, and compare responses across games. Groups typically considered having lower status in the US – women, minorities, young adults and non-Protestants – are averse to disadvantageous inequality while higher status groups – men, Caucasians, middle-aged people and Protestants – dislike being betrayed.

status_and_distrust.pdf
Bowles, Hannah Riley, Linda Babcock, and Lei Lai. “Social incentives for gender differences in the propensity to initiate negotiations: Sometimes it does hurt to ask”. Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes 103.1 (2007): , 103, 1, 84–103. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract

Four experiments show that gender differences in the propensity to initiate negotiations may be explained by differential treatment of men and women when they attempt to negotiate. In Experiments 1 and 2, participants evaluated written accounts of candidates who did or did not initiate negotiations for higher compensation. Evaluators penalized female candidates more than male candidates for initiating negotiations. In Experiment 3, participants evaluated videotapes of candidates who accepted compensation offers or initiated negotiations. Male evaluators penalized female candidates more than male candidates for initiating negotiations; female evaluators penalized all candidates for initiating negotiations. Perceptions of niceness and demandingness explained resistance to female negotiators. In Experiment 4, participants adopted the candidate’s perspective and assessed whether to initiate negotiations in same scenario used in Experiment 3. With male evaluators, women were less inclined than men to negotiate, and nervousness explained this effect. There was no gender difference when evaluator was female.

social_incentives.pdf
2006
Sjoberg, Laura. Gender, Justice, and the Wars in Iraq: A Feminist Reformulation of Just War Theory. Oxford: Lexington Books, 2006. Web. Publisher's VersionAbstract
Gender, Justice, and the Wars in Iraq offers a feminist critique and reconstruction of just war theory. It points out gender biases in the just war tradition and suggests alternative jus ad bellum and jus in bello standards that emphasize women, political marginality, and empathy. Laura Sjoberg applies this feminist just war theory to analyze the wars in Iraq since the end of the Cold War―the First Gulf War, the war of sanctions, and the Second Gulf War. By examining international political discourse from and about Iraq, it shows where war generally and just war specifically are gendered. Through the stories of key just war characters like Jessica Lynch, this book reveals where women are omitted and subordinated in global politics. Sjoberg suggests that dialogue and empathy replace righteousness in just war thinking for the good of human safety everywhere and concludes with alternative visions of Gulf War policies, inspired by feminist just war theory.

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