Understanding and Shifting Social Norms of Female Labor Force Participation in Saudi Arabia: Follow-Up
Last registered on January 08, 2018


Trial Information
General Information
Understanding and Shifting Social Norms of Female Labor Force Participation in Saudi Arabia: Follow-Up
Initial registration date
January 07, 2018
Last updated
January 08, 2018 10:18 AM EST
Primary Investigator
University of Chicago
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
University of Zurich
PI Affiliation
The University of Chicago
Additional Trial Information
In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Female labor force participation (henceforth FLPF) is very low in Saudi Arabia and social norms appear to be a constraint to female employment in the country. In the first round of our experiment, we surveyed groups of Saudi Arabian men and found that most men privately support female labor force participation while believing that others hold much more conservative views. At the end of the survey, participants were given a choice between a $5 Amazon gift card and the opportunity to sign-up their wife for an online job matching service. An information treatment showing randomly selected participants the distribution of true beliefs increased the likelihood that participants chose the job matching service sign-up, suggesting that correcting individual beliefs about others may be an effective way to encourage female labor force participation. This follow-up trial, which will take place three months after the initial experiment, aims to understand the lasting effects of our information treatment on beliefs about the opinions of others, the labor force status of participants' wives and the potential spillover effect on a different but related outcome about attitudes towards the personal freedoms of women--the willingness of men to sign up their wives for driving lessons.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Bursztyn, Leonardo, Alessandra L. González and David Yanagizawa-Drott. 2018. "Understanding and Shifting Social Norms of Female Labor Force Participation in Saudi Arabia: Follow-Up." AEA RCT Registry. January 08. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/2633/history/24787
Experimental Details
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
We have three primary outcomes of interest
1) Beliefs about the opinions of others in their neighborhood
* Using the same set of statements we presented in our main experiment, we will ask participants to guess how many people would agree to each statement if 30 residents of their neighborhood were randomly selected and polled. The statements we plan to present are as follows. We will first present a statement regarding the labor market in general: “In my opinion, the minimum wage for Saudis (SAR 3000) should be kept at its current level”. This will be followed by two statements regarding participation of women in the labor force (our primary outcomes): “In my opinion, women should be allowed to work outside of the home”; “In my opinion, a woman should have the right to work in semi-segregated environments”.
2) Wife's labor supply actions
* These questions will include whether their wife is currently employed, whether she was employed three months ago, whether she has interviewed for a job in the past three months, whether she has applied to a job in the past three months, and whether she has any interviews scheduled for the future. For each of these questions, we will also ask whether the job is at home or outside the home. If the job is outside the home, we will ask if the job is more or less than 30 hours a week. Finally, if she is currently employed or was employed three months ago, we will also ask for her occupation.
3) Sign-up for driving lessons
* In order to understand the effect of our initial information treatment on an outcome that is not necessarily strictly related to our job service sign-up intervention but is nonetheless relevant for FLFP and female empowerment in general, we will ask participants whether they would sign up their wife for driving lessons if given the opportunity.

It is worth noting that since this is a follow-up survey among the participants of the main experiment, subjects may have had social interactions and communication post-treatment. (This issue is particularly pertinent given that subjects were recruited from the same neighborhood with overlapping social connections.)
Thus, individuals in the treatment group may have shared information with those in the control group, effectively contaminating the experimental treatment. For this reason, if one cannot reject the null hypothesis of no differences in outcomes in the follow-up, it may either reflect a true null or non-trivial contamination. By contrast, if the null hypothesis is rejected it would imply contamination was limited.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
We will call each of the participants from our initial trial to conduct a short 10-minute follow-up survey. Before each call, we will record the phone number and session number of each participant from the sign-up sheets administered at the beginning of our initial experiment. Using the trailing 3 digits of each phone number, we will be able to determine the treatment status of each respondent in the original experimental session without directly linking their responses in the follow-up survey with their individual responses from the initial survey. We hope that this will maximize the condition of anonymity during the follow-up.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
While participants were randomly assigned to the information treatment in our initial experiment, no randomization will be conducted in the follow-up stage; all calls will follow the same script and all participants will be asked the same questions.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
The maximum number is 500 respondents (if we are able to reach every participants from the original experiment). We don't expect to reach all of them.
Sample size: planned number of observations
The maximum number is 500 respondents (if we are able to reach every participants from the original experiment). We don't expect to reach all of them.
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB Name
University of Chicago SBS-IRB
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Is the intervention completed?
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Program Files
Program Files
Reports and Papers
Preliminary Reports
Relevant Papers