How long does it take to admit that you do not know? Gender differences in response time to political knowledge questions Articles uri icon

publication date

  • July 2022

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 7


  • 3


  • 9

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 2053-1680


  • The implications of the persistent gender gap in political knowledge are a puzzle that the literature is still disentangling; and research has evidenced important differences in the way women and men respond to survey questions. We argue in this article that political knowledge survey items not only inform about differences in cognition but also about other latent traits related to gender stereotyping. Gender stereotypes around political knowledge push men to be knowledgeable but not so much women, which we expect to affect men and women's survey responses differently. To test this expectation, we explore response times of do not know answers to political knowledge items. Our results show that men, particularly those who declare being interested in politics, take longer than women to admit that they do not know the answer to political knowledge items.


  • Anthropology
  • Politics
  • Sociology


  • do not know; gender gap; political knowledge; response time; stereotypes