Female Participation in Male-Dominated Fields

Last registered on January 03, 2023


Trial Information

General Information

Female Participation in Male-Dominated Fields
Initial registration date
December 21, 2022

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
January 03, 2023, 5:03 PM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.



Primary Investigator


Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
PI Affiliation

Additional Trial Information

On going
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Although female workforce participation has increased in the last decades, coding remains a male-dominated field. We have partnered with a coding course provider that is interested in increasing female enrollment and persistence throughout their selection process. One stage of the selection process, in particular, generates a significant gender imbalance: the need to play online logic and memory games. We designed a nudge experiment to try to enhance female take up of these games and their persistence through the selection process. The experiment will test whether providing information about female participation and performance in the previous selection process stimulates other women to persist in the process. Moreover, we would like to understand what are the potential barriers that discourage women to persist through the selection process and which are the mechanisms that can explain the effect (or lack of effect) of our proposed treatment. Thus, survey questions addressing beliefs will be inserted in the selection process. The results might shed light into how stereotypes and beliefs influence women's decision to enter and persist in male-dominated environments.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Ferman, Bruno , Luiz Felipe Fontes and Maria Pedote. 2023. "Female Participation in Male-Dominated Fields." AEA RCT Registry. January 03. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.10671-1.0
Experimental Details


To stimulate female (and also non-male) participation and persistence throughout the selection process, we will implement a nudge intervention. For candidates who enroll in the selection process but have not yet taken part in the second stage of the selection process - which consist of playing two online games (a logic and a memory one) - reminder messages about the importance of playing those games will be sent via WhatsApp. Candidates who are eligible to receive messages will be separated by gender and randomly selected into treatment and control group. Control candidates will receive a reminder message to play the games containing information about the coding course that is already available on the course’s website. Treatment group will receive the same message, but with one additional information: the fact that the coding course provider cares about gender diversity and half of the candidates admitted through the last selection process (which took place in July 2022) were non-male. Although we are primarily interested in the effect of treatment for women and other non-male candidates, treatment effect will be evaluated for all genders, separately.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Our outcomes of interest are: (i) whether the candidate plays the logic and memory games (each game will be analysed separately), up until two weeks after receiving the last reminder message, (ii) whether the candidate scores above 0 in the played game, (iii) the score attained (for those who play each game). Outcomes will be analyzed separately by gender.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Mechanisms: answers to survey questions implemented during the registering stage of the selection process, measuring beliefs and previous coding knowledge.
Secondary outcomes: participation on subsequent stages of the selection process and final approval into the coding course.
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
The evaluation design will be based on the random allocation of a sample of enrolled candidates into one of the two conditions: (i) control ; (ii) treatment. Both conditions were described in the intervention. Randomization is within gender and within having answered the survey questions. Messages will be sent two or three times a week (when the database is updated), for candidates who (i) have enrolled since the last update, (ii) have not yet played the games, or have only played one of them and scored above the minimum level required to pass, and (iii) who have given consent to being contacted via WhatsApp. For candidates who receive the reminder messages but continue not to play the games, a reinforcement message will be sent about one week later (but not on the same weekday the the first message was sent).
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Approximately 1000 individuals: 700 men and 300 female or non-binary.
Sample size: planned number of observations
Approximately 1000 individuals: 700 male and 300 non-male (female or non-binary).
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Approximately 500 control candidates: 150 non-male and 350 male.
Approximately 500 treatment candidates: 150 non-male and 350 male.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Committee on the Use of Humans as Experimental Subjects (COUHES)
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Opinion n. 205/2022


Post Trial Information

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Is the intervention completed?
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials