Social and political events can have unintended consequences on the quality of data collected by researchers. Current events can influence how we perceive their world in the short term, influencing how we respond to surveys and interviews about our culture.
Amir Shoham and colleagues discovered a way to study the culture and gender without undue influence from current events. To do so, he analyzed how grammatical structure and gender markings in language were related to gender diversity on the board of directors.
Shoham found that there were fewer women on the board of directors in cultures with more gender markings, suggesting that gender markings have an indirect impact on income inequality through the gender wage gap. Policymakers should take note of such implications when working towards reducing social inequality.