The Trouble with Boys: Social Influences and the Gender Gap in Disruptive Behavior

63 Pages Posted: 29 Oct 2011 Last revised: 1 Nov 2011

See all articles by Marianne Bertrand

Marianne Bertrand

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Jessica Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS)

Date Written: October 2011

Abstract

This paper explores the importance of the home and school environments in explaining the gender gap in disruptive behavior. We document large differences in the gender gap across key features of the home environment - boys do especially poorly in broken families. In contrast, we find little impact of the early school environment on non-cognitive gaps. Differences in endowments explain a small part of boys' non-cognitive deficit in single-mother families. More importantly, non-cognitive returns to parental inputs differ markedly by gender. Broken families are associated with worse parental inputs and boys' non-cognitive development, unlike girls', appears extremely responsive to such inputs.

Suggested Citation

Bertrand, Marianne and Pan, Jessica, The Trouble with Boys: Social Influences and the Gender Gap in Disruptive Behavior (October 2011). NBER Working Paper No. w17541, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1950959

Marianne Bertrand (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

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773-834-5943 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://gsbwww.uchicago.edu/fac/marianne.bertrand/vita/cv_0604.pdf

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Cambridge, MA 02138
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617-588-0341 (Phone)
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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Jessica Pan

National University of Singapore (NUS) ( email )

1E Kent Ridge Road
NUHS Tower Block Level 7
Singapore, 119228
Singapore

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