In this paper, the authors provide one of the first systematic analyses of gender’s effect on trade attitudes. They draw on a unique representative national survey of American workers that allows them to evaluate a variety of potential explanations for gender differences in attitudes toward free trade and open markets more generally. They find that existing explanations for the gender gap, most notably differences between men and women in economic knowledge and differing material self-interests, do not explain the gap. Rather, the gender difference in trade preferences and attitudes about open markets is due to less favorable attitudes toward competition among women, less willingness to relocate for jobs among women, and more isolationist non-economic foreign policy attitudes among women.
Published in Volume 59, Issue 2, pages 1-13