nep-gen New Economics Papers
on Gender
Issue of 2017‒02‒26
eleven papers chosen by
Jan Sauermann
Stockholms universitet

  1. Discriminate me - if you can! The Disappearance of the Gender Pay Gap among Public-Contest Selected Employees By Töpfer, Marina; Castagnetti, Carolina; Rosti, Luisa
  2. Gender Disparities in Employment and Earnings in Sub-Saharan Africa: Evidence from Swaziland By Brixiova, Zuzana; Kangoye, Thierry
  3. The Life-cycle Benefits of an Influential Early Childhood Program By García, Jorge Luis; Heckman, James J.; Leaf, Duncan Ermini; Prados, Maria José
  4. Feminization of entrepreneurship in developing countries By Molina, Jose Alberto; Ortega, Raquel; Velilla, Jorge
  5. Missing from the Market: Purdah Norm and Women's Paid Work Participation in Bangladesh By Asadullah, Niaz; Wahhaj, Zaki
  6. Teacher Assessments versus Standardized Tests: Is Acting "Girly" an Advantage? By Di Liberto, Adriana; Casula, Laura
  7. Increasing Women's Parliamentary Representation in Asia and the Pacific: The Indonesian Experience By Ben Hillman
  8. The International Epidemiological Transition and the Education Gender Gap By Klasing, Mariko Jasmin; Klasing, Mariko J.; Milionis, Petros
  9. Working Hours, Promotion and the Gender Gap in the Workplace By Kato, Takao; Ogawa, Hiromasa; Owan, Hideo
  10. Workplaces, Low Pay and the Gender Earnings Gap in Britain By Butcher, Tim; Mumford, Karen A.; Smith, Peter N.
  11. Stereotype Threat, Role Models, and Demographic Mismatch in an Elite Professional School Setting By Birdsall, Christopher; Gershenson, Seth; Zuniga, Raymond

  1. By: Töpfer, Marina; Castagnetti, Carolina; Rosti, Luisa
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the effect of public-contest recruitment on earnings by gender using Italian labor market microdata. By decomposing the gender pay gap and accounting for double selection into employment and method of recruitment, we find that the gender pay gap vanishes, and even reverses among the young, when emplyoees are selected through a public contest. Since in such a case: a) selected employees (both women and men) possess higher productive characteristics than unselected ones; and b) the component referred to as 'discrimination' (either with or without selection) is no longer the main driver of the gap, our results suggest that public contests are merit-based and gender-fair screening devices. On the contrary, in general the Italian labor market appears gender biased, with a full-sample gender pay gap of 4%.
    JEL: J71 J13 J31
    Date: 2016
  2. By: Brixiova, Zuzana (University of Cape Town); Kangoye, Thierry (African Development Bank)
    Abstract: In this paper we provide first systematic evidence on the gender disparities in the labor market in Swaziland, drawing on the country's first two (2007 and 2010) Labor Force Surveys. We find that even though the global financial crisis had a less severe effect on the labor market outcomes of women than those of men, women continue to have lower employment and labor force participation rates. Utilizing the Heckman probit selection model shows that while women account for a disproportionate share of the self-employed, they are more often than men involved in low-productivity activities and rely less on formal finance. We conclude with policies that could help Swaziland – and other middle income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa – narrow these disparities and embark on a more inclusive growth path.
    Keywords: gender gap in the labor market, skills, credit, multivariate analysis, policies
    JEL: J16 J21 L26 O12
    Date: 2016–12
  3. By: García, Jorge Luis (University of Chicago); Heckman, James J. (University of Chicago); Leaf, Duncan Ermini (University of Southern California); Prados, Maria José (University of Southern California)
    Abstract: This paper estimates the long-term benefits from an influential early childhood program targeting disadvantaged families. The program was evaluated by random assignment and followed participants through their mid-30s. It has substantial beneficial impacts on health, children's future labor incomes, crime, education, and mothers' labor incomes, with greater monetized benefits for males. Lifetime returns are estimated by pooling multiple data sets using testable economic models. The overall rate of return is 13.7% per annum, and the benefit/cost ratio is 7.3. These estimates are robust to numerous sensitivity analyses.
    Keywords: childcare, early childhood education, long-term predictions, gender differences in responses to programs, health, quality of life, randomized trials, substitution bias
    JEL: J13 I28 C93
    Date: 2016–12
  4. By: Molina, Jose Alberto; Ortega, Raquel; Velilla, Jorge
    Abstract: We analyze whether male or female individuals have a higher probability of becoming entrepreneurs in developing regions (Africa, Asia, South America), controlling by individuals’ entrepreneurial environment and countries’ macroeconomic context. Using the GEM data, we avoid heterogeneity and the potential confounding problems arising from the definition of entrepreneurship. We find that women tend to become entrepreneurs more often than men in South America and Africa, highlighting the importance of entrepreneurship as a survival labor choice. No gender gaps in entrepreneurial participation are found in Asia.
    Keywords: Entrepreneurship; Gender; Feminist; Developing countries
    JEL: J16 L26 O10 O57
    Date: 2017–02–20
  5. By: Asadullah, Niaz (University of Malaya); Wahhaj, Zaki (University of Kent)
    Abstract: Despite significant improvement in female schooling over the last two decades, only a small proportion of women in South Asia are in wage employment. We revisit this puzzle using a nationally representative data set from Bangladesh. Probit regression results show that even after accounting for human capital endowments, women are systematically less likely to participate in paid work than men. Oaxaca decomposition of the gender gap confirms that most of it (i.e. 95%) is unexplained by endowment differences. Instead, community norms such as the practice of purdah (i.e. female seclusion) have a statistically significant and negative effect on women's participation in paid work. We do not find any evidence that purdah norm variable affect paid work participation indirectly, via determining the labor force participation decision. The correlation between current work participation and purdah norm in natal household is insignificant confirming that the result is not driven by omitted individual-specific socio-economic factors. We also use data on past purdah practice of the current community to estimate an instrumental variable Probit regression model and rule out the possibility of reverse causality. Detailed decomposition analysis reveals that community purdah norm accounts for a quarter of the total unexplained gap. The findings are robust to controls for the influence of co-resident in-laws, household structure, marital status, and a wide range of community characteristics such as ecological factors, presence of NGOs, provision of public infrastructure, remoteness and local labor market conditions including the norm of unacceptability of unmarried women's outside work in the community.
    Keywords: Purdah norm, gender inequality, labor market participation, poverty, Bangladesh
    JEL: I26 I28 J12 J16 O12
    Date: 2016–12
  6. By: Di Liberto, Adriana (University of Cagliari); Casula, Laura (University of Cagliari)
    Abstract: We study if Italian teachers do apply gender discrimination when judging students. To this aim, we use a difference-in-differences approach that exploits the availability of both teachers (non-blind) and standardized test (blind) scores in math and language that Italian students receive during the school year. Using data for all sixth graders, descriptives show that in both scores girls are better than boys in the language scores, while in math boys perform better than girls in the blind test. Moreover, our analysis suggest that boys are always discriminated by teachers in both subjects. This result holds also when we control for class fixed effects, students noncognitive skills, gender specific-attitude towards cheating and possible cultural differences towards gender attitudes in math or language.
    Keywords: schooling outcomes, discrimination, gender stereotypes
    JEL: L2 I2 M1 O32
    Date: 2016–12
  7. By: Ben Hillman
    Abstract: In recent years, governments across Asia and the Pacific have adopted gender quotas to increase women's representation in parliament. In 2003, Indonesia introduced a 30% gender quota that, over two election cycles, contributed to an increase in women's share of seats in the national parliament from 9 per cent to 18 per cent. In the most recent (2014) elections, despite stronger enforcement of the quota provisions, expansive civil society-led efforts to support women candidates and favourable press coverage, the percentage of women elected to the national parliament declined. This article examines the evolving political context in which the gender quota operates to argue that common support programs designed to maximize the gender quota's impact on women's representation are insufficiently targeted at major obstacles. Findings will be of interest to lawmakers and public sector professionals working to advance gender equity and to students of democratization, representation and gender politics.
    Keywords: women, democracy, parliament, Asia Pacific, gender quota, Indonesia
    Date: 2017–02–16
  8. By: Klasing, Mariko Jasmin; Klasing, Mariko J.; Milionis, Petros
    Abstract: We explore the impact of the international epidemiological transition on educational outcomes of males and females over the second half of the 20th century. We provide strong evidence that the large resulting declines in mortality rates from infectious diseases gave rise to differential life expectancy gains across genders, with females benefiting mostly from them due to their greater responsiveness to vaccination. We also document that these gender differences in life expectancy gains are subsequently reflected in similar differential increases in educational outcomes for males and females. Using an instrumental variables strategy that exploits pre-intervention variation in mortality rates across different infectious diseases we confirm the causal nature of these effects and show that the magnitude of the effects account for a large share of the reduction in the education gender gap that emerged over this period.
    JEL: I15 J16 O11
    Date: 2016
  9. By: Kato, Takao (Colgate University); Ogawa, Hiromasa (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies Japan); Owan, Hideo (University of Tokyo)
    Abstract: This paper presents a novel model of promotion within the firm which sheds new light on the interplay between working hours and the odds of subsequent promotion. The model's key feature is the coexistence of two different sources of asymmetric information: (i) the worker's cost of long working hours: and (ii) the worker's OJT ability (the worker's ability to accumulate valuable human capital on the job through learning by doing). The worker's cost of working long hours is known only to the worker, while the worker's OJT ability is accurately assessed only by the firm observing him/her on the job. Long working hours signal the worker's commitment to the firm, which determines the surplus produced when the worker is promoted. Thus, the firm provides the worker with managerial training only after observing the employee's hours worked, a signal of his/her commitment to the firm or lack thereof. The firm's decision to provide training also depends on its private information about the worker's OJT ability, which affects his/her future productivity if and when the worker gets promoted. Upon completion of training, the firm then promotes the worker. The model illuminates under what conditions, it is efficient for the firm to adopt the information revelation strategy – reveal its private information on the worker's OJT ability to him/her before the worker decides on whether to work long hours and signal his/her commitment. Using the model, we show that under a reasonable set of conditions, the firm may find it optimal to adopt the information revelation strategy for women but not for men, and derive an empirical testable hypothesis that the correlation between working hours and subsequent promotion will be stronger for women than for men. We analyze longitudinal personnel data from a large Japanese manufacturing firm and provide rigorous econometric evidence in support of the hypothesis.
    Keywords: working hours, promotion, rat race, adverse selection, and the gender gap
    JEL: M51 J16
    Date: 2016–12
  10. By: Butcher, Tim (Low Pay Commission, UK); Mumford, Karen A. (University of York); Smith, Peter N. (University of York)
    Abstract: This study provides a robust assessment of the importance of a number of determinants of the gaps in earnings between the four groups of employees who make up the British workforce; males and females who work full and part-time. The analysis considers the contribution of individual employee characteristics as well as occupation, industry, region and other workplace specific characteristics. The results are compared with previous findings for 2004 (Mumford and Smith, 2009) and with alternative data from the ASHE series for 2004, 2011 and 2015.
    Keywords: gender pay gap, low pay
    JEL: J01 J70 J78
    Date: 2016–12
  11. By: Birdsall, Christopher (Boise State University); Gershenson, Seth (American University); Zuniga, Raymond (American University)
    Abstract: Ten years of administrative data from a diverse, private, top-100 law school are used to examine the ways in which female and nonwhite students benefit from exposure to demographically similar faculty in first-year required law courses. Arguably causal impacts of exposure to same-sex and same-race instructors on course-specific outcomes such as course grades are identified using a two-way (student and classroom) fixed effects strategy. Impacts of faculty representation on long-run, student-specific outcomes such as graduation are identified using an instrumental variables (IV) strategy that exploits transitory variation in the demographic makeup of the faculty. Having an other-sex instructor reduces the likelihood of receiving a good grade (A or A-) by one percentage point (3%) and having an other-race instructor reduces the likelihood of receiving a good grade by three percentage points (10%). The effects of student-instructor demographic mismatch are particularly salient for nonwhite female students. The IV estimates suggest that the share of first-year courses taught by nonwhite instructors increases the probabilities that nonwhite students persist into the second year and graduate on time. These results provide novel evidence of the pervasiveness of role-model effects in elite settings and of the graduate-school education production function.
    Keywords: demographic mismatch, law school, gender, race
    JEL: I23 J15 J44
    Date: 2016–12

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