Dec 7, 2012

Experimental Economics: Gender and Corruption

I provide an overview of the literature that explores whether there are gender differences in corruption using economic decision-making experiments designed to simulate corrupt transactions usually involving acts of bribery between a firm and a government official. A primary focus of the chapter is to critically examine this evidence with a view to addressing the following question: will increased female participation in public life – both in government and bureaucracy – lead to reduced corruption? I find that across a wide variety of experiments, studying different aspects of corruption, it is either the case that women behave in a more pro-social and less corrupt manner than men or that there are no significant gender differences. There are no studies that find men to be less corrupt. Consequently, I conclude by arguing that we can answer the question posed above in the affirmative.
That is from a literature review on the subject by Ananish Chaudhuri in Research in Experimental Economics (2012). The chapter is available here - Google Books, p. 13. The literature on the topic is substantial, see here

Why? May be women have different time preferences than men, there is indeed some evidence showing that women are more patient, see here. Perhaps this explains why women are the majority of clients of micro-lending organizations. 

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