Are women underrepresented in business and politics? And do they earn less than men because of gender inequalities in society or because women choose to opt out? Even more importantly, if there are still inequalities, why does society as a whole believe that women’s job opportunities are equal to men’s?
Nicole Stephens, assistant professor of management at the Kellog school, and Stanford psychology doctoral student Cynthia Levine, have been investigating why there is a difference between what people perceive and the reality of the situation.
In an article to be published in Psychological Science, they argue that the common American assumption that behaviour is a product of personal choice, fosters the belief that opportunities are equal and that gender barriers no longer exist in today’s workplace.
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