Perhaps because my office is on a college campus, September screams FRESH START to me. I’ve got a new planner teed up, new goals to pursue, and a new routine that involves changing out of my athleisure and biking to the office at least twice a week.
In that vein, now seems like the right time to pause and take stock of what’s working and what isn’t, Daminger Dispatch-wise. I would be forever grateful if you would:
Why you should bother:
I’ve included an easter egg in the survey. (Hint: some fun news for those who were fans of this interview)
It will take mere minutes of your time.
Your answers will help me tailor my content to your interests.
You are a generous person.
Thank you in advance :)
Reader rec: Speaking of surveys, Génesis alerted me to this fun tool (fielded by Facebook, with partners including the UN) for studying national and regional differences in household gender equality during COVID-19.
When I was playing around with the data, I noticed two similar questions:
1) How much do you agree or disagree with the following statement? “Men and women should have equal opportunities (e.g. in education, jobs, household decision-making).”
2) Out of 10 of your neighbors, how many do you think believe that men and women should have equal opportunities?
For the countries I looked at, respondents described themselves as more “woke” than their neighbors. In the U.S., for instance, 90% of respondents agreed or strongly agreed that men and women should have equal opportunities. But they guessed that only about 76% of their neighbors would do the same. In Turkey, 78% of respondents agreed but guessed that only 50% of their neighbors would.
How should we make sense of this discrepancy? One possibility is that people want to come across positively, even to random scientists conducting a survey. If they know what the “right” (i.e., most socially acceptable) way to answer a question is, they may say the “right” thing rather than the true thing. In this case, respondents might say they believe men and women should have equal opportunities, even if they don’t actually believe that.
Similarly, people might genuinely believe they’re more woke than average - this sort of self-serving bias comes up all the time when you ask people to rate their own skills. (E.g., everyone believes they are a better-than-average driver.)
Finally, there might be some selection bias among survey respondents. Because this survey was administered via Facebook, it’s likely that the people who encountered the survey and took the time to respond might differ from the average person. Perhaps they’re younger, or wealthier (especially in countries with lower rates of internet connectivity), or some other characteristic that’s generally associated with more egalitarian beliefs about gender.
Thanks, Génesis, for sending me down this fun rabbit hole!