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I just spotted an interesting study from YouGov, about attitudes towards gender equality.

We asked 14 questions in total – 10 of which are statements about gender equality requiring an agree/disagree response. Four represent views about gender roles that would be considered conservative, such as ‘it is unattractive for women to express strong opinions in public’, and six represent views that would be considered progressive in relation to the conservative statements, such as ‘creating more opportunity for women should be one of the world’s top concerns’ and ‘women and men should generally get equal pay’.

They did this across twenty four countries (but skipped Canada in favor of Australia), and crunched the numbers.

Not only do Swedish people have the most progressive attitudes to gender equality worldwide, there is virtually no gap between the views of men and women. In Asian countries like China, Hong Kong and Singapore there is a 20-21 point difference between male and female attitudes.

It was this bit that made me fire up WordPress, though.

On the whole Americans are not more progressive than people in other wealthy countries and, on many issues, are actually more conservative.

There are only two issues where they’re more progressive: “it is unattractive for women to express strong opinions publicly,” and “women and men are equal.” In all eight others they’re below average for wealthier countries, and for “Creating more opportunity for women should be one of the world’s top concerns” they’re less progressive than even poorer nations. Some back-of-the-envelope calculations suggest it’s weak evidence of Americans holding less progressive views than their wealthy peers.

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