1 Rosabeth Moss Kanter, “What if Lehman Brothers Had Been Lehman Sisters?” Harvard Business Review, October 25, 2010.
2 We collected 112 reports focused on investing in women produced by corporations, NGOs, multilateral organizations, banks, and consulting firms over the past 10 years. For each report, we summarized the findings and examined in particular the arguments the investors used to make the case that investing in women would make sense. We found female risk aversion to be a prevalent theme in the reports. Interestingly, we found very little difference in the rhetoric used by the various types of organizations producing the reports.
3 Initial research and experiences in microfinance argued strongly for a positive effect of microfinance on women and on lending portfolio returns (Beatriz Armendariz and Jonathan Morduch, The Economics of Microfinance, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2005). Recent research controlling for a number of confounding factors has been more equivocal (Bert D’Espallier, Isabelle Guérin, and Roy Mersland, “Women and Repayment in Microfinance: A Global Analysis,” World Development, 39, 2011, pp. 758-772; and Abhijit Banerjee, Esther Duflo, Rachel Glennerster, et al., “The Miracle of Microfinance? Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation,” NBER Working Papers, May 2013). Scholars have also highlighted important risks of burdening an at-risk population (poor women) with the further risks of debt (Ananya Roy, “Subjects of Risk: Technologies of Gender in the Making of Millennial Modernity,” Public Culture, 24, no. 1, 2012, pp. 131-155).
4 Christine Lagarde, “What if It Had Been Lehman Sisters?” International Herald Tribune, May 11, 2010.
5 As quoted in “Women Can Save Wall Street,” The New York Post, March 10, 2012.
6 Julie A. Nelson, “Are Women Really More Risk-Averse than Men? A Re-Analysis of the Literature Using Expanded Methods,” Journal of Economic Surveys, 29, no. 3, 2015, pp. 566-585. Julie A. Nelson, “The Power of Stereotyping and Confirmation Bias to Overwhelm Accurate Assessment: The Case of Economics, Gender and Risk,” Journal of Economic Methodology, 21, no. 3, 2014, pp. 211-231.
7 Alison L. Booth and Patrick Nolen, “Gender Differences in Risk Behaviour: Does Nurture Matter?” The Economic Journal, 122, no. 558, 2012, pp. F56-F78. Melissa L. Finucane, Paul Slovic, C. K. Mertz, et al., “Gender, Race, and Perceived Risk: The ‘White Male’ Effect,” Health, Risk & Society, 2, no. 2, 2000, pp. 159-172. Priyanka B. Carr and Claude M. Steele, “Stereotype Threat Affects Financial Decision Making,” Psychological Science, 21, 2010, pp. 1411-1416. Katja Meier-Pesti and Elfriede Penz, “Sex or Gender? Expanding Sex-Based View by Introducing Masculinity and Femininity as Predictors of Financial Risk Taking,” Journal of Economic Psychology, 29, 2008, pp. 180-196.
8 Kathy Kay and Claire Shipman, “The Confidence Gap,” The Atlantic, May 2014. Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever, Women Don’t Ask: The High Cost of Avoiding Negotiation—and Positive Strategies for Change, New York: Bantam Books, 2007.
9 The Double-Bind Dilemma for Women in Leadership: Damned if You Do, Doomed if You Don’t, Catalyst, 2007.
10 Soutik Biswas, “India’s Micro-Finance Suicide Epidemic,” BBC News, December 16, 2010.
11 Peter Glick and Susan Fiske, “The Ambivalent Sexism Inventory: Differentiating Hostile and Benevolent Sexism,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 70, no. 3, 1996, pp. 491-512. Melanie Tannenbaum, “The Problem When Sexism Just Sounds So Darn Friendly…” Scientific American, April 2, 2013.
12 Julie C. Becker and Stephen C. Wright, “Yet Another Dark Side of Chivalry: Benevolent Sexism Undermines and Hostile Sexism Motivates Collective Action for Social Change,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 101, no. 1, 2011, pp. 62-77.
13 Sheryl Sandberg, Lean In, New York: Knopf, 2013.
14 Robin J. Ely, Pamela Stone, and Colleen Ammerman, “Rethink What You ‘Know’ About High-Achieving Women,” Harvard Business Review, December 2014.
15 Laurie A. Rudman and Julie E. Phelan, “Backlash Effects for Disconfirming Gender Stereotypes in Organizations,” Research in Organizational Behavior, 28, 2008, pp. 61-79.
16 Carol Dweck, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Ballantine Books, 2007. James Byrnes, David Miller, and William Schafer, “Gender Differences in Risk Taking: A Meta-Analysis,” Psychological Bulletin, 125, no. 3, 1999, pp. 367-383.
17 Stefania Albanesi et al., “Gender and Dynamic Agency: Theory and Evidence on the Compensation of Top Executives,” Federal Reserve Bank of New York Staff Reports, No. 718, March 2015.
18 Related research by Evan Apfelbaum, Katherine Phillips, and Jennifer Richeson (“Rethinking the Baseline in Diversity Research: Should We Be Explaining the Effects of Homogeneity?” Perspectives in Psychological Science, vol. 9, 2014, p. 235) makes this same argument regarding their analysis of the effects of diversity in organizations.
19 Kathy Kay and Claire Shipman, “The Confidence Gap,” The Atlantic, May 2014.