Gender bias in the 21st century: Identifying and understanding covert manifestations of bias



Women now comprise half of the workforce in the Western world, and men's participation in domestic labor is at its highest. Though these changes represent an important step towards achieving gender equality, research suggests that gender bias is still alive and well, although the ways in which it is expressed have become increasingly less overt. Through my work, I am interested in identifying and understanding the conditions under which these more covert forms of gender bias emerge in everyday life. In my research, I provide evidence of the enduring power of gender stereotypes in giving rise to biased evaluations of women, even when this bias is not recognized by either the perpetrators or the targets of the bias. In one line of research, I present data demonstrating that female leaders in positions of power do not always “break the glass ceiling” and improve the chances of success for other women, as is often assumed. In another line of research, I demonstrate a novel manifestation of gender bias whereby changes in performance give rise to more negative evaluations of women than men, regardless of whether performance improves or declines. Importantly, this bias emerges even when performance evaluations based on objective information, a situation often believed to prevent biased evaluations.