Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Research Papers in Economics,
Stockholm University, Department of Economics

No 2003:4: The impact of gender stereotypes on economic growth

Anne Boschini ()
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Anne Boschini: Dept. of Economics, Stockholm University, Postal: Department of Economics, Stockholm University, S-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: This paper argues that gender-specific educational choices have macroeconomic consequences in terms of economic growth. The presence of a social norm affecting persons choosing gender atypical educations at the university level generates a suboptimal allocation of ability, which lowers technological change and the stock of human capital, and thus hurts growth. The analysis of a cross-section of 88 countries over the period 1970 to 1998 lends empirical support for the importance of the educational gender stereotypes for economics growth.

Keywords: economic growth; ability; higher education; gender-specific educational choices; social norms

JEL-codes: I21; J16; Z13

28 pages, February 1, 2003

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