Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs
Comparative Politics and International Relations presents
How Fathers’ Leave Shapes Attitudes Toward Gender Equality
Stereotypical attitudes about gender roles help sustain inequalities, which favor men over women in the social, economic, and political domains. We explore whether exposure to counter-stereotypical gender roles is able to undermine traditional gender stereotypes and promote more equal attitudes. To study this, we focus on a real-world social policy intervention that disrupts traditional gender roles: paid paternity leave. We exploit a policy discontinuity in Estonia, which increased fathers’ paid leave entitlement from 10 to 30 days for children born on or after July 1, 2020 and fielded a survey to pre- and post-reform new parents. Contrasting the attitudes of parents who were (and were not) directly affected by the reform that required active choices about adopting the counter-stereotypical gender role, we find that the reform led to more gender egalitarian views on some but not all attitudes among new parents.
William Taussig Professor in Arts and Sciences
Margit Tavits is the William Taussig Professor in Arts and Sciences and Chair of the Department of Political Science at Washington University in St. Louis. She specializes in comparative politics and her research interests include political parties, political institutions, corruption, post-communist politics, and gender equality.
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This event was first published on January 28, 2021 and last updated on April 5, 2021.