Once commonplace, the phenomenon of all-female or all-male workplaces have largely gone the way of the buggy whip.
Many of the benefits of this increased diversity might be difficult to measure and quantify, but my coauthor Wallace Mullin and I set out to try to measure two potential effects of gender diversity in the workplace: on “social capital” and on performance.
Social capital, roughly speaking, refers to the stock of things like goodwill, happiness, and cooperation, which lead to mutual benefit within the group. Obviously, we care about how happy workers are for many reasons, but there was an additional important question: regardless of whether social capital is higher or lower in a more mixed workplace, how does that mix effect the eventual performance of the firm?
In particular, we would investigate these questions with detailed data provided by a firm which operated about 60 offices with various gender mixes.