Women and Public Policy Program Seminar Series
Shifting Policy, Workplace Norms and Culture to End Workplace Sexual Violence

Shifting Policy, Workplace Norms and Culture to End Workplace Sexual Violence

April 29, 2019

Millions of people disclosed sexual harassment and violence against them following the #MeToo breakthrough in October 2017. Despite the fact that advocates, individuals and the government had been taking action to address sexual harassment, it remains a widespread problem that prevents employees from reaching their full potential. Monica Ramirez, a national recognized expert on ending workplace sexual violence and the author of the Dear Sisters letter that helped spark the TIMES UP movement, will discuss the policy measures, as well as the employment and societal norms that must be addressed to meaningfully address this problem.

Monica Ramirez, MC/MPA 2015, Co-Founder and President, Alianza Nacional de Campesinas

Babies, Work, or Both? Highly-Educated Women’s Employment and Fertility in East Asia with Mary Brinton

Babies, Work, or Both? Highly-Educated Women’s Employment and Fertility in East Asia with Mary Brinton

March 22, 2019

Only two OECD countries continue to exhibit an M-shaped curve of female labor force participation across the life cycle: Japan and South Korea. In this seminar, Mary Brinton analyzes how labor market structure and workplace norms influence this pattern. Her analysis draws on data from over 160 in-depth interviews with highly-educated Japanese and Korean men and women of childbearing age, and demonstrates how working conditions exert a powerful influence on gendered patterns of behavior at home and in the labor market.

Mary Brinton, Reischauer Institute Professor of Sociology, Harvard University

The Mommy Effect: Do Women Anticipate the Employment Effects of Motherhood? with Jessica Pan

The Mommy Effect: Do Women Anticipate the Employment Effects of Motherhood? with Jessica Pan

January 23, 2019
 
After decades of convergence, the gender gap in employment outcomes has recently plateaued in many wealthy countries, despite the fact that women have increased their investment in human capital over this period. In this seminar, Jessica Pan analyzes these two trends using an event-study framework with data from the U.S. and U.K. Her findings provide evidence that women in modern cohorts underestimate the impact of motherhood on their future contributions to the labor market. Upon becoming parents, women adopt more negative views toward female employment and report that parenthood is harder than they expected. Jessica also examines whether young women’s expectations about the future labor supply are correct when they make their key educational decisions. She finds that female high school seniors are increasingly and substantially overestimating the likelihood they will be in the labor market in their thirties, which is a sharp reversal from previous cohorts of women who substantially underestimated their future labor supply. Jessica concludes the seminar by specifying a model of women’s choice of educational investment to reconcile the expectations of motherhood across generations.
 
Jessica Pan, WAPPP Research Fellow; Associate Professor of Economics, National University of Singapore
 
Implicit Stereotypes: Evidence from Teachers’ Gender Bias with Michela Carlana

Implicit Stereotypes: Evidence from Teachers’ Gender Bias with Michela Carlana

January 23, 2019

In this seminar, Michela Carlana analyzes the impact of teachers' gender stereotypes on student achievement. She collects a unique dataset including information on the Gender-Science Implicit Association Test (IAT) of teachers and students' outcomes, such as performance in standardized test scores, track choice, and self-confidence. Michela finds that teachers’ stereotypes induce girls to underperform in math and self-select into less demanding high-schools, following the track recommendation of their teachers. These effects are at least partially driven by a lower self-confidence on own math ability of girls exposed to gender biased teachers.

Michela Carlana, WAPPP Faculty Affiliate; Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School

Out of the Running? Gender and Race Differences in Political Ambition among HKS and Other Elite Millennials with Shauna Shames

Out of the Running? Gender and Race Differences in Political Ambition among HKS and Other Elite Millennials with Shauna Shames

March 23, 2018

Millennials are often publically criticized for being apathetic about the American political process and their lack of interest in political careers. But what do millennials themselves have to say about the prospect of holding political office? Are they as uninterested in political issues and the future of the American political system as the media suggests? What do we learn by looking at both gender and racial groups’ political ambition comparatively?

In this seminar, Shauna Shames goes directly to the source and draws from extensive research, including over 50 interviews and an extensive survey (n=760), with graduate students in elite institutions that have historically been a direct link for their graduates into state or federal elected office: Harvard Law, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and Boston’s Suffolk University Law School. Shauna, herself a young graduate of Harvard University, suggests that millennials are not uninterested; rather, they don’t believe that a career in politics is the best way to create change. Millennials view the system as corrupt or inefficient and are particularly skeptical about the fundraising, frenzied media attention, and loss of privacy that have become staples of the American electoral process. They are clear about their desire to make a difference in the world but feel that the “broken” political system is not the best way to do so—a belief held particularly by millennial women and women of color.

Shauna Shames, Assistant Professor, Political Science Department, Rutgers University-Camden

Fathers and Work Family Balance: Mix Methods for Understanding Fatherhood Involvement and Enrichment Experiences with Marc Grau-Grau

Fathers and Work Family Balance: Mix Methods for Understanding Fatherhood Involvement and Enrichment Experiences with Marc Grau-Grau

April 20, 2017

Although there is still a gender division of labor in post-industrial countries, evidence seems to suggest that there is a growing number of fathers that want to be more involved with their children. Using a Time Use Survey, this seminar analyzes how paternal time devoted to children under 10 years old differs across educational level, income, age, number of paid working hours, occupation, and partner’s occupation, among other independent variables. Understanding patterns of fathers, who are more involved with their children, will presumably give some clues on how to promote gender equality in parenting. Furthermore, while research shows that fatherhood involvement is positively related with child outcomes and gender equality, less is known about the benefits of having both work and family roles for working fathers themselves and their jobs. Using the conceptual framework of work-family enrichment, Marc Grau-Grau explores how resources developed at home are positively transferred and applied at work.

Marc Grau-Grau, WAPPP Fellow; PhD Candidate in Social Policy, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh 

Intersectionality and Women’s Health: Sexual Orientation, Race/Ethnicity, and Cervical Cancer Screening with Madina Agénor

Intersectionality and Women’s Health: Sexual Orientation, Race/Ethnicity, and Cervical Cancer Screening with Madina Agénor

April 13, 2017

This seminar explores why investigating health inequities in relation to multiple dimensions of social inequality is critical to promoting women's health. Drawing on her quantitative and qualitative research, Madina Agénor addresses how sexual orientation and race/ethnicity simultaneously affect cervical cancer screening among U.S. women and shows that neglecting to examine the role of multiple dimensions of social inequality can lead to interventions that fail to promote the health of the most marginalized women.

Madina Agénor, Assistant Professor of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health

Linking Non-Cognitive Skills and Educational Achievement to Girls in Developing Societies: The Case of Ghana with Sally Nuamah

Linking Non-Cognitive Skills and Educational Achievement to Girls in Developing Societies: The Case of Ghana with Sally Nuamah

January 26, 2017

Recent literature on non-cognitive skills provides promising evidence on the power of community and classroom based interventions for closing achievement gaps across school quality, race, and class. Yet, much of this work has been conducted on males that attend elite institutions in the U.S. There is very little work on how these same tactics can be implemented to overcome gender barriers and improve educational achievement of girls, particularly those that attend schools in non-western settings. In this seminar, Sally Nuamah investigates the experiences of girls from underprivileged backgrounds in Ghana striving to be the first in their families to go to college. She finds that school structure - leadership, curriculum, and peer networks - mediates the effects of their socio-cultural environments and individual background through the facilitation of positive academic identities (non-cognitive skills) that promote identity building and strategy development. These positive academic identities are useful for navigating the gender specific barriers that these girls face, thereby enabling their academic achievement.

Sally Nuamah, WAPPP Fellow; Joint Postdoctoral Fellow, University Center for Human Values and Center for Study of Democratic Politics, Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University

 

Laboratory Evidence of the Effects of Sponsorship on the Competitive Preferences of Men and Women with Katie Coffman

Laboratory Evidence of the Effects of Sponsorship on the Competitive Preferences of Men and Women with Katie Coffman

March 9, 2016

How can women get ahead in competitive fields? One proposed way is through sponsorship programs – where a person (the sponsor) advocates for a protégé, and in doing so, takes a stake in her success. While these types of programs have received popular attention, little empirical evidence exists on their effectiveness. Coffman uses a laboratory experiment to explore two channels through which sponsorship has been posited to increase advancement in a competitive workplace. In the experimental setting, being sponsored provides a credible signal of one’s ability and/or creates a link between the protégé’s and sponsor’s payoffs. She finds that both features of sponsorship significantly increase willingness to compete among men on average, while neither of these channels significantly increases willingness to compete among women on average. Similarly, sponsorship has a directionally more positive effect on the earnings of male protégés than female protégés. Therefore, sponsorship does not close the gender gap in competitiveness or earnings. This seminar will explore how these insights from the laboratory could help to inform the design of sponsorship programs in the field. Speaker: 

Katie Coffman, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics, Ohio State University

Two Decades of Gender-Role Attitude Change in Europe with Mary Brinton

Two Decades of Gender-Role Attitude Change in Europe with Mary Brinton

February 29, 2016

This seminar explores the assumption of many cross-national studies that gender-role attitudes fall along a single continuum between traditional and egalitarian. Brinton analyzes over-time data from 18 European countries and identifies trajectories of attitudinal change. Brinton demonstrates that while traditional gender-role attitudes have precipitously and uniformly declined, European nations are not converging towards one dominant egalitarian model but instead are diverging across three distinct varieties of egalitarianism.
Speaker: Mary C. Brinton, Reischauer Institute Professor of Sociology, Harvard University
Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App