Working Paper No. 1137

Cultural Determinants of Gender Roles: Pragmatism Is an Important Factor behind Gender Equality Attitudes among Children of Immigrants

Published: November 2, 2016Pages: 26Keywords: Gender roles; intergenerational transmission; Hofstede cultural dimensions; GenderJEL-codes: D13; D83; J16; Z13
Published version

Cultural Determinants of Gender Roles: Pragmatism Is an Important Factor behind Gender Equality Attitudes among Children of Immigrants Martin Ljunge


This paper presents evidence of how attitudes toward gender roles in the home and market are shaped by Hofstede’s six cultural dimensions. Children of immigrants in a broad set of European countries with ancestry from across the world are studied. Individuals are examined within country of residence using variation in cultural dimensions across countries of ancestry.

The approach focuses attention on how gender roles are shaped across generations within families. Both influences on the father’s and mother’s side are studied. Ancestry from more masculine cultures shape more traditional gender roles on both parents’ sides.

On the father side more pragmatic cultures foster gender equality on the mother’s side power distance promote equality attitudes, although this influence differs markedly between daughters and sons. Pragmatism is in several circumstances the strongest influence on gender norms.

Martin Ljunge

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