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Superior female education: Explaining the gender earnings gap trend in Thailand

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  • Nakavachara, Voraprapa

Abstract

It is well-known that along with Thailand's remarkable increase in real income per capita during 1985-2005, an increase in overall income inequality was observed. What is not documented in the literature is that, during the same time period, the gender earnings inequality declined considerably. This paper seeks to identify the main factors that contributed to the decline in gender earnings gap in Thailand's wage and salary sector during 1985-2005. A parametric methodology, the Neumark (1988) version of the Blinder-Oaxaca (1973) method, is implemented in order to decompose gender earnings gap. I also make a methodological contribution by proposing a way to modify the DiNardo-Fortin-Lemieux (1996) nonparametric decomposition method so that its results are comparable to those from the Neumark version of the Blinder-Oaxaca method. The key findings of this paper are as follows. First, I find that increases in female education and changes in unobserved factors, which were concurrent with modernization, were the main sources of the decline in gender earnings gap. Second, over time, improvements in the education of females in this sector surpassed that of males. However, the superior education of females did not result in females earning higher than males due to the existing counteracting effect of the unexplained factors. Finally, the nonparametric investigation corroborated the results from the parametric methodology.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Asian Economics.

Volume (Year): 21 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 198-218

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Handle: RePEc:eee:asieco:v:21:y:2010:i:2:p:198-218

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/asieco

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Keywords: Thailand Gender inequality Education Decomposition Kernel density estimation;

References

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  1. Reimers, Cordelia W, 1983. "Labor Market Discrimination against Hispanic and Black Men," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(4), pages 570-79, November.
  2. David Neumark, 1987. "Employers' discriminatory behavior and the estimation of wage discrimination," Special Studies Papers 227, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Alan S. Blinder, 1973. "Wage Discrimination: Reduced Form and Structural Estimates," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 8(4), pages 436-455.
  4. Jeong, Hyeok, 2008. "Assessment Of Relationship Between Growth And Inequality: Micro Evidence From Thailand," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(S2), pages 155-197, September.
  5. Thomas Lemieux, 2002. "Decomposing changes in wage distributions: a unified approach," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 35(4), pages 646-688, November.
  6. Dan Black & Amelia Haviland & Seth Sanders & Lowell Taylor, 2006. "Why Do Minority Men Earn Less? A Study of Wage Differentials among the Highly Educated," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(2), pages 300-313, May.
  7. Cameron, Lisa A & Dowling, J Malcolm & Worswick, Christopher, 2001. "Education and Labor Market Participation of Women in Asia: Evidence from Five Countries," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 49(3), pages 461-77, April.
  8. Peter G. Warr, 1999. "What Happened to Thailand?," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 22(5), pages 631-650, 07.
  9. Cotton, Jeremiah, 1988. "On the Decomposition of Wage Differentials," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(2), pages 236-43, May.
  10. Lauridsen, Laurids S., 1998. "The financial crisis in Thailand: Causes, conduct and consequences?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 26(8), pages 1575-1591, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Tatli, Ahu & Vassilopoulou, Joana & Ă–zbilgin, Mustafa, 2013. "An unrequited affinity between talent shortages and untapped female potential: The relevance of gender quotas for talent management in high growth potential economies of the Asia Pacific region," International Business Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 539-553.
  2. Michelle Rendall, 2012. "Structural change in developing countries: has it decreased gender inequality?," ECON - Working Papers 077, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.

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