Experimental Economics Seminar - Elif Incekara Hafalir (UTS Business School)

Title: Perceptions of Norms about Working Mothers: Another Look at the Case of Saudi Arabia

Abstract: In order to gain an understanding about perceptions of social norms regarding the participation of women in the labor force, we used six questions in a survey fielded with both male and female students at King Saud University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The first two questions about female labor force participation (FLFP) are taken from Bursztyn et al. (2018). In the other four questions, three are regarding the effect of FLFP on family and a final one is related to gender priorities when jobs are scarce. While we largely replicate the Bursztyn et al. findings of underestimation of support for FLFP in our female and male student samples, we find markedly different patterns for the three questions related to the impact of FLFP on family life. Respondents systematically overestimate FLFP-friendly attitudes for these questions. We then explore the relationship between these beliefs and misperceptions and beliefs about labor market outcomes in the near and distant future.