DP17474 Women in economics: the role of gendered references at entry in the profession
We study the presence and the extent of gender differences in reference letters for graduate students in economics and finance, and how they relate to early labor market outcomes. To these ends, we build a novel rich dataset and combine Natural Language Processing techniques with standard regression analysis. We find that men are described more often as brilliant and women as hardworking and diligent. We show that the former (latter) characteristics relate positively (negatively) with various subsequent career outcomes. We provide evidence that the observed differences in the way candidates are described are driven by implicit gender stereotypes.