Women who take husband’s name seen as more caring, less intelligent, and worth half a million dollars less

by on April 17, 2010  •  In Social science

A new study by Dutch researchers from Tilburg Institute for Behavioral Economics Research, Tilburg University, found that

A woman who took her partner's name or a hyphenated name was judged as more caring, more dependent, less intelligent, more emotional, less competent, and less ambitious in comparison with a woman who kept her own name. A woman with her own name, on the other hand, was judged as less caring, more independent, more ambitious, more intelligent, and more competent.

Turns out these perceptions have consequences: "[A] job applicant who took her partner's name, in comparison with one with her own name, was less likely to be hired for a job, and her monthly salary was estimated at [$1,162.29] lower (calculated to a working life, [$488,161.37])."

I'd really like to see if the same results would be found in the U.S. from the same study.  We do know that American employers respond to signals about race: a study by University of Chicago researchers published in 2004 found that when fictional resumes were sent in response to employment want ads in Boston and Chicago, "Emily Walsh" and "Greg Baker" got 50 per cent more callbacks than "Lakisha Washington" and "Jamal Jones."


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *