London: Women now have a higher IQ than men, a new study has revealed.
For the first time in IQ testing, psychologists have found that female scores have risen above those of men.
Since IQ testing began a century ago, women have been as much as five points behind, leading psychologists to suggest embedded genetic differences.
But that gap has been narrowing in recent years and this year women have moved ahead, according to James Flynn, a world-renowned authority on IQ tests.
"In the last 100 years the IQ scores of both men and women have risen but women's have risen faster," the Daily Mail quoted Flynn as saying.
"This is a consequence of modernity. The complexity of the modern world is making our brains adapt and raising our IQ," he said.
One possible explanation for this change is that women's lives have now become more demanding as they multitask between raising a family and doing a job.
Another reason could be that women have a slightly higher potential intelligence than men but are realising it only now.
Flynn, who will publish his findings in a book, said more data was needed to explain the trend.
"The full effect of modernity on women is only just emerging," he said.
He collated IQ examination results from countries in Western Europe and from the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Argentina and Estonia.
It showed that in westernised countries the gap in scores between men and women had become minimal.
Since the data for making exact comparisons was sparser it could be carried out for only a handful of countries.
It included Australia, where male and female IQs were found to be almost identical.
In New Zealand, Estonia and Argentina, women scored marginally more than men.As the world gets more complex, and living in it demands more abstract thought, so people are adapting," Flynn said.
"I suspect that the same trends are happening in Britain, too, although the data is too sparse to be sure," he added.