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The Gender Gap in Self-Promotion

Christine L. Exley, Judd B. Kessler

NBER Working Paper No. 26345
Issued in October 2019
NBER Program(s):Economics of Education Program, Labor Studies Program

In job applications, job interviews, performance reviews, and a wide range of other environments, individuals are explicitly asked or implicitly invited to assess their own performance. In a series of experiments, we find that women rate their performance less favorably than equally performing men. This gender gap in self-promotion is notably persistent. It stays just as strong when we eliminate gender differences in confidence about performance and when we eliminate strategic incentives to engage in self-promotion. Because of the prevalence of self-promotion opportunities, this self-promotion gap may contribute to the persistent gender gap in education and labor market outcomes.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w26345

 
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