Most of us do not need a study to tell us women as a whole are far more empathetic than men. However, studies have shown the difference is a result of different brain wiring.
Women are twice as good as men are at interpreting a woman’s emotions by looking her in the eyes. Women have more activity in the parts of the brain related to emotion and memory when looking into another woman’s eyes. Men show far less activity in those parts of the brain.
Women are generally better at recognising and appropriately responding to emotions, while men have other strengths. Men are wired to understand how things work. They excel at analysing how a system works and how to fix it. This shows up in men’s love of fixing mechanical things, but it goes further. This gender difference is part of the reason he always wants to help you fix things when you just want him to hear you. Whatever empathy he feels is quickly drowned out by the part of his brain designed to analyse and fix things. His desire to help you fix things (even when you are not looking for a fix) is his way of showing he cares about you.
As with most gender brain differences, there are exceptions. One study found about 17% of women are more male like, good at analysing systems, while about 17% of men are better at empathy. Still other men and women have a balance of the two – doing each less well than one gender but better than the other gender.