Research finds women in the US are now viewed as equally or more competent than men
According to Courtney Connley of CNBC:
Over the past 70 years, women in the U.S. have made major strides at work and beyond. Women are now earning college degrees at a faster rate than men are and make up nearly half of the labor force.
An analysis of 16 public opinion polls conducted between the years of 1946 and 2018 found that women are now viewed as just as competent as men, if not more competent.
The study, which was conducted by researchers at Northwestern University and published by the American Psychological Association, looked at the opinions of more than 30,000 U.S. adults in the 16 polls. They analyzed the adults based on their responses to three personality traits: communion, agency and competence.
Communion, according to the researchers, is linked to someone having compassion and sensitivity. Agency is linked to ambition, aggressiveness and the ability to make decisions. Competency is linked to intelligence and creativity.
Gender stereotypes associated with competency and communion, the analysis found, have evolved over time, but those associated with agency have remained unchanged.
The study cites a poll taken in 1946 that found that 35% of people thought men and women were equally intelligent. In 2018, 86% of people surveyed said that men and women are equally intelligent, 9% said women are more intelligent and 5% said men are more intelligent.
When looking at the average amount of people over time who thought that men and women share the same level of agency, that number came to a 32%.