Research Highlights

Female economists are invited to write short non-technical summaries of some of their recent work. These are published below.

30th March 2023

Correcting public misperceptions about medical doctors' opinions persistently increases Covid-19 vaccinations

Non technical summary written by Julie Chytilová, Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Charles University, Prague 

Identifying sources of vaccine hesitancy and ways how to reduce it has been one of the central public policy challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. We show that public misperceptions about doctors' views on Covid-19 vaccinations reduce willingness to get vaccinated. Specifically, we document three observations: (1) The vast majority of medical doctors in the Czech Republic trust and support vaccination. (2) There is a widespread belief among the public that doctors’ opinions are divided and that only about half trust the vaccines. (3) Informing people that there is a broad positive consensus among doctors persistently increases vaccination uptake by the public. Thus, effectively communicating doctors‘ true views can play an important role in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

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23rd February 2023

Why does capital flow from equal to unequal countries?

Non technical summary written by Federica Romei (University of Oxford)

Why does capital flow from equal to unequal countries? This question is at the heart of my research with Sergio de Ferra and Kurt Mitman. First, we document a new empirical fact: among advanced economies, unequal countries like the UK and the USA tend to accumulate fewer assets in the rest of the world than more equal countries do, such as those in Scandinavia. Second, we present a theory for why this happens: more unequal countries develop deeper financial markets. Therefore, households living in unequal countries can borrow more than households in equal countries. But let's explain everything in detail. 

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12th December 2022

Flexible Wages, Bargaining, and The Gender Gap

Non-technical summary written by Barbara Biasi

Women are often believed to be reluctant to negotiate for higher pay. This could give a workplace advantage to men and exacerbate gender pay gaps. Evidence from lab experiments generally supports this hypothesis, showing that women avoid situations in which they have to negotiate or bargain. As individually based compensation becomes more prevalent even in traditionally unionized sectors, due to the passage of right-to-work laws, understanding whether flexible pay penalizes women is key to understanding the sources of the gender wage gap.

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5th October 2022

Inter-Group Contact, Racial Stereotypes and Academic Performance

Non technical summary written by: Lucia Corno (Cattolica University Milan)

Contemporary societies have become increasingly diverse, and prejudice and stereotypes towards certain groups are at the forefront of public debate. Stereotypes may induce distortions in economic and social behavior, generating adverse consequences for groups subject to negative stereotypes, including unequal access to economic, social and political opportunities.

Can increased interaction between groups reduce stereotypes about out-group members?  

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19th August 2022

Maternal Labor Supply: Perceived Returns, Constraints, and Social Norms

Non technical summary written by: Teodora Boneva (University of Bonn)

Mothers with young children face the decision of working full-time, part-time, or not at all. They decide very differently: in Germany, for example, approximately 36% of mothers worked full-time, 37% worked part-time, and 27% did not work at all in 2019 (OECD Family Database). Various determinants of female labor supply have been examined in the literature, including family policies, cultural norms, the availability of childcare, and part-time employment opportunities. A factor that has received little attention so far is the perceived return to maternal labor supply: How do people perceive the benefits and costs to mothers working, and how are those beliefs related to maternal labor supply decisions? 

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