Skip to main content
×
Home

Mind the Gender Gap: An Experiment on the Influence of Self-Efficacy on Political Interest

  • Jessica Robinson Preece (a1)
Abstract

In a healthy democracy, one would expect to see roughly equal levels of political participation among men and women. Yet—aside from voting—women are significantly less politically engaged than men at both the mass and elite levels (Atkeson 2003; Bennett and Bennett 1989; Burns, Schlozman, and Verba 2001; Lawless and Fox 2010; Verba, Burns, and Schlozman 1997). The political engagement gender gap suggests that some form of “adverse selection” is at play in the system (Mansbridge 1999, 632). This takes many forms: women have traditionally had less access to resources, more burdensome family obligations, and fewer relevant role models. However, emerging research demonstrates that even when accounting for many of these factors, women remain less engaged with politics than similarly situated men. This suggests that changing these structural factors is not enough to close the gender gap in political engagement—we must address the “gendered psyche” that prevents many women from fully participating in civic life (Lawless and Fox 2010, 12).

Copyright
References
Hide All
Atkeson Lonna Rae. 2003. “Not All Cues Are Created Equal: The Conditional Impact of Female Candidates on Political Engagement.” The Journal of Politics 65 (4): 1041–61.
Atekson Lonna Rae, and Rapoport Ronald B.. 2003. “The More Things Change the More They Stay the Same: Examining Gender Differences in Political Attitude Expression, 1952–2000.” Public Opinion Quarterly 67 (4): 495521.
Bandura Albert. 1982. “Self-Efficacy Mechanism in Human Agency.” American Psychologist 37 (2): 122–47.
Barabas Jason, Jerit Jennifer, Pollock William, and Rainey Carlisle. 2014. “The Question(s) of Political Knowledge.” American Political Science Review 108 (4): 840–55.
Bennett Linda L. M., and Bennett Stephen Earl. 1989. “Enduring Gender Differences in Political Interest: The Impact of Socialization and Political Dispositions.” American Politics Research 17 (1): 105–22.
Berinsky Adam, Huber Gregory, and Lenz Gabriel. 2012. “Evaluating Online Labor Markets for Experimental Research: Amazon.com's Mechanical Turk.” Political Analysis 20: 351–68.
Beyer Sylvia. 1990. “Gendered Differences in the Accuracy of Self-Evaluations of Performance.” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 59 (5): 960–70.
Beyer Sylvia, and Bowden Edward M.. 1997. “Gender Differences in Self-Perceptions: Convergent Evidence from Three Measures of Accuracy and Bias.” Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 23 (2):157–72.
Burns Nancy, Schlozman Kay, and Verba Sidney. 2001. The Private Roots of Public Action: Gender, Equality, and Political Participation. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Burt-Way Barbara J., and Kelly Rita Mae. 1992. “Gender and Sustaining Political Ambition: A Study of Arizona Elected Officials.” Political Research Quarterly 45 (1): 1125.
Bylsma Wayne H., and Major Brenda. 1992. “Two Routes to Eliminating Gender Differences in Personal Entitlement: Social Comparisons and Performance Evaluations.” Psychology of Women Quarterly 16 (2): 193200.
Campbell David E., and Wolbrecht Christina. 2006. “See Jane Run: Women Politicians as Role Models for Adolescents.” The Journal of Politics 68 (2): 233–47.
Craig Stephen C., Niemi Richard, and Silver Glenn E.. 1990. “Political Efficacy and Trust: A Report on the NES Pilot Study Items.” Political Behavior 12 (3): 289314.
Delli Carpini Michael X., and Keeter Scott. 1996. What Americans Know about Politics and Why It Matters. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
Delli Carpini Michael X., and Keeter Scott. 2000. “Gender and Political Knowledge.” In Gender and American Politics: Women, Men, and the Political Process, 2nd ed., ed. Tolleson-Rinehard Sue and Josephson Jyl J.. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.
Doherty Leanne. 2011. “Filling the Female Political Pipeline: Assessing a Mentor-Based Internship Program.” Journal of Political Science Education 7 (1): 3447.
Dolan Kathleen. 2011. “Do Women and Men Know Different Things? Measuring Gender Differences in Political Knowledge.” The Journal of Politics 73 (1): 97107.
Dow Jay K. 2009. “Gender Differences in Political Knowledge: Distinguishing Characteristics-Based and Returns-Based Differences.” Political Behavior 31 (1): 117–36.
Fox Richard L., and Lawless Jennifer L.. 2010. “If Only They'd Ask: Gender, Recruitment, and Political Ambition.” The Journal of Politics 72 (2): 310–26.
Fox Richard L., and Lawless Jennifer L.. 2011. “Gendered Perceptions and Political Candidacies: A Central Barrier to Women's Equality in Electoral Politics.” American Journal of Political Science 55 (1): 5973.
Fox Richard L., and Lawless Jennifer L.. 2014. “Uncovering the Origins of the Gender Gap in Political Ambition.” American Political Science Review 108 (3): 499519.
Furnham Adrian, and Rawles Richard. 1995. “Sex Differences in the Estimation of Intelligence.” Journal of Social Behavior and Personality 10 (3): 741.
Gidengil Elisabeth, Giles Janine, and Thomas Melanee. 2008. “The Gender Gap in Self-Perceived Understanding of Politics in Canada and the United States.” Politics & Gender 4 (4): 535–61.
Greenlee Jill S., Holman Mirya R., and VanSickle-Ward Rachel. 2014. “Making It Personal: Assessing the Impact of In-Class Exercises on Closing the Gender Gap in Political Ambition.” Journal of Political Science Education 10 (1): 4861.
Hannagan Rebecca J., Littvay Levente, and Popa Sebastian Adrian. 2014. “Theorizing Sex Differences in Political Knowledge: Insights from a Twin Study.” Politics & Gender 10 (1): 89114.
Kanthak Kristin, and Woon Jonathan. 2015. “Women Don't Run? Election Aversion and Candidate Entry.” American Journal of Political Science 59 (3): 595612.
Karp Jeffrey A., and Banducci Susan A.. 2008. “When Politics Is Not Just a Man's Game: Women's Representation and Political Engagement.” Electoral Studies 27 (10): 105–15.
Karpowitz Christopher F. 2006. “Having a Say: Public Hearings, Deliberation, and Democracy in America.” Ph.D. diss., Princeton University.
Karpowitz Christopher F., and Mendelberg Tali. 2014. The Silent Sex: Gender, Deliberation, and Institutions. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Kerber Linda. 1998. No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship. New York: Hill and Wang.
Michael Kimmel, Hearn Jeff, and Connell R. W., eds. 2004. Handbook of Studies on Men and Masculinities. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Kling Kristen C., Hyde Janet Shibley, Showers Carolin J., and Buswell Brenda N.. 1999. Gender Differences in Self-Esteem: A Meta-Analysis . Psychological Bulletin 125 (4): 470.
Lawless Jennifer L., and Fox Richard L.. 2010. It Still Takes A Candidate: Why Women Don't Run for Office. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Lizotte Mary-Kate, and Sidman Andrew H.. 2009. “Explaining the Gender Gap in Political Knowledge.” Politics & Gender 5 (2): 127–51.
Mansbridge Jane. 1999. “Should Blacks Represent Blacks and Women Represent Women? A Contingent ‘Yes.’The Journal of Politics 61 (3): 628–57.
McGlone Matthew, Aronson Joshua, and Kobrynowicz Diane. 2006. “Stereotype Threat and the Gender Gap in Political Knowledge.” Psychology of Women Quarterly 30 (4): 392–98.
Mendelberg Tali, Karpowitz Christopher F., and Oliphant Baxter. 2014. “Gender Inequality in Deliberation: Unpacking the Black Box of Interaction.” Perspectives on Politics 12 (1): 1844.
Mondak Jeffery J. 1999. “Reconsidering the Measurement of Political Knowledge.” Political Analysis 8 (1): 5782.
Mondak Jeffery J., and Anderson Mary R.. 2004. “The Knowledge Gap: A Reexamination of Gender-Based Differences in Political Knowledge.” The Journal of Politics 66 (2): 492512.
Morrell Michael E. 2003. “Survey and Experimental Evidence for a Reliable and Valid Measure of Internal Political Efficacy.” Public Opinion Quarterly 67 (4): 589602.
Ondercin Heather L., Garand James C., and Crapanzano Lauren E.. 2011. “Political Learning during the 2000 U.S. Presidential Election: The Impact of the Campaign on the Gender Gap in Political Knowledge.” Electoral Studies 30 (4): 727–37.
Pajares Frank. 2002. “Gender and Perceived Self-Efficacy in Self-Regulated Learning.” Theory into Practice 41 (2): 117–25.
Peace Bob. 2002. Men and Gender Relations. Croydon, Victoria: Tertiary Press.
Petrides K. V., and Furnham Adrian. 2000. “Gender Differences in Measured and Self-Estimated Trait Emotional Intelligence.” Sex Roles 42 (5–6): 449–61.
Pew Research Center. 2013. “Women Make Significant Gains in the Workplace and Educational Attainment, but Lag in Pay.” March 8. http://www.pewresearch.org/daily-number/women-make-significant-gains-in-the-workplace-and-educational-attainment-but-lag-in-pay/ (accessed December 13, 2014).
Preece Jessica, and Stoddard Olga. 2015. “‘Why Women Don't Run: Experimental Evidence on Gender Differences in Political Competition Aversion.” Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 117: 296308.
Rios Desdamona, Stewart Abigail J., and Winter David G.. 2010. “‘Thinking She Could Be the Next President’: Why Identifying with the Curriculum Matters.” Psychology of Women Quarterly 34 (3): 328–38.
Roberts Tomi-Ann, and Nolen-Hoeksema Susan. 1994. “Gender Comparisons in Responsiveness to Others’ Evaluations in Achievement Settings.” Psychology of Women Quarterly 18 (2): 221–40.
Sapiro Virginia. “Private Costs of Public Commitments or Public Costs of Private Commitments? Family Roles versus Political Ambition.” American Journal of Political Science 26 (2): 265–79.
Schlozman Kay Lehman, Burns Nancy, and Verba Sidney. 1994. “Gender and the Pathways to Participation: The Role of Resources.” The Journal of Politics 56 (4): 963–90.
Silbermann Rachel. 2015. “Gender Roles, Work-Life Balance, and Running for Office.” Quarterly Journal of Political Science 10 (2): 123–53.
Stolle Dietlind, and Gidengil Elisabeth. 2010. “What Do Women Really Know? A Gendered Analysis of Varieties of Political Knowledge.” Perspectives on Politics 8 (1): 93109.
Thomas Melanee. 2012. “The Complexity Conundrum: Why Hasn't the Gender Gap in Subjective Political Competence Closed?Canadian Journal of Political Science 45 (2): 337–58.
Verba Sidney, Burns Nancy, and Schlozman Kay Lehman. 1997. “Knowing and Caring about Politics: Gender and Political Engagement.” The Journal of Politics 59 (4): 1051–72.
Wolak Jennifer, and McDevitt Michael. 2010. “The Roots of the Gender Gap in Political Knowledge in Adolescence.” Political Behavior 33 (3): 505–33.
Wolbrecht Christina, and Campbell David E.. 2007. “Leading by Example: Female Members of Parliament as Political Role Models.” American Journal of Political Science 51 (4): 921–39.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Politics & Gender
  • ISSN: 1743-923X
  • EISSN: 1743-9248
  • URL: /core/journals/politics-and-gender
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×
Type Description Title
PDF
Supplementary Materials

Preece supplementary material
Preece supplementary material 1

 PDF (51 KB)
51 KB

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 18
Total number of PDF views: 158 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 705 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 21st November 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.