Gender Inequality in Economic Resources

  • Clara KulichEmail author
  • Marion Chipeaux


Women’s lower economic power is one of the symptoms of a hierarchical organization of societies. Creating economic gender equality needs to be a core interest of policies and research as it is a key to better well-being for other social groups and has advantages for society at large. This chapter first presents current trends in the understanding of unequal distribution of economic resources and specifically the gender pay gap based on several structural and psychological factors. It then takes a different angle on these individual difference approaches and analyzes the contributions and moderating forces in the social context which reinforce or inhibit both structural and psychological reasons for economic inequalities. Social psychological findings help to understand how stereotypes and social norms affect bias in pay allocators, the differential valuation of job content when stereotyped as feminine or masculine, and the gender variance in pay receivers’ preferences and behaviors. In the concluding remarks three contextual keys for efficient interventions are advanced aiming at changing the social reality and thereby attenuating gender bias of individuals: The increase of female representation in positions of power, combined with diversity friendly societal and organizational climates, and transparency of the distribution of economic power.


Gender Pay gap Stereotypes Gendered job characteristics Gender bias Gendered preferences 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Geneva, Faculty of Psychology and Educational SciencesGenèveSwitzerland

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