Data and Code for: Hunger and the Gender Gap


Temporary changes in biological state, such as hunger, can impact decision making differently for men and women. Food scarcity is correlated with a host of negative economic outcomes. Two explanations for this correlation are that hunger affects economic preferences directly or that hunger creates a mindset that focuses on scarcity management to the detriment of other decisions. To test these predictions, we conduct a lab-in-the-feld experiment in a health screening clinic in Shanghai, recruiting participants who finish their annual physical exam either before or after they have eaten breakfast. We compare the hungry and sated groups on their risk, time and generosity preferences as well as their cognitive performance. Our results show that men and women respond to hunger in opposite directions, thus hunger reduces the gender gap in decision quality, risk aversion and cognitive performance, but creates one in generosity. Finally, we examine several biomarkers and find that higher blood lipid levels are correlated with greater choice inconsistency, risk aversion and generosity. We contribute to emerging insights on the biological foundations for economic preferences and outcomes

individuals visiting one of the health screening clinics of the company MeiNian.

Metadata Access
Creator Chen, Yan; Jiang, Ming; Krupka, Erin
Publisher ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research
Publication Year 2020
Rights Download
OpenAccess true
Contact ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research
Resource Type Dataset
Discipline Economics