Reassessing the Gender Wage Gap: Does Labour Force Attachment Really Matter? Evidence from Matched Labour Force and Biographical Surveys in Madagascar
AbstractAssessing gender inequalities has become one of the key issues of the new international poverty reduction strategies implemented in most LDCs in the past few years. It has been argued that differences in labour force attachment across gender are important to explain the extent of the gender earnings gap. However, measures of women's professional experience are particularly prone to errors given discontinuity in labour market participation. For instance, the classical Mincerian approach, where potential experience is used as a proxy for actual experience due to lack of appropriate data, has its limits in estimating the true returns to human capital. Such biases in the estimates cannot be ignored since the returns to human capital are used in the standard decomposition techniques to measure the extent of gender-based wage discrimination. By matching two original surveys conducted in Madagascar in 1998 - a labour force survey and a biographical survey - we built a unique dataset that enabled us to combine the original information gathered from each of them, particularly the earnings from current employment and the entire professional trajectories. Our results lead to an upward reappraisal of returns to experience, as potential experience always exceeds actual experience, for both males and females. In addition, controlling for further qualitative aspects of labour force attachment, we obtain a significant increase in the portion of the gender gap explained by observable characteristics, while the differences in average actual experience across sexes lead to markedly different estimates of the fraction of the gender earnings gap explained by experience.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality in its series Working Papers with number 16.
Length: 52 pages
Date of creation: 2005
Date of revision:
gender wage gap; returns to human capital; labour force participation; biographical data; Madagascar.;
Other versions of this item:
- Christophe Nordman & François Roubaud, 2005. "Reassessing the Gender Wage Gap: Does Labour Force Attachment Really Matter? Evidence from Matched Labour Force and Biographical Surveys in Madagascar," Working Papers DT/2005/06, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
- J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
- O12 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-01-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-HRM-2006-01-24 (Human Capital & Human Resource Management)
- NEP-LAB-2006-01-24 (Labour Economics)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Heather Antecol & Kelly Bedard, 2004.
"The Racial Wage Gap: The Importance of Labor Force Attachment Differences across Black, Mexican, and White Men,"
Journal of Human Resources,
University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(2).
- Heather Antecol & Kelly Bedard, 2001. "The Racial Wage Gap: The Importance of Labor Force Attachment Differences Across Black, Mexican and White Men," Claremont Colleges Working Papers 2001-35, Claremont Colleges.
- Horton, Susan & Kanbur, Ravi & Mazumdar, Dipak, 1991. "Labor markets in an era of adjustment : an overview," Policy Research Working Paper Series 694, The World Bank.
- Hoddinott, John, 1996. "Wages and Unemployment in an Urban African Labour Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(439), pages 1610-26, November.
- Moon-Kak Kim & Solomon W. Polachek, 1994. "Panel Estimates of Male-Female Earnings Functions," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 29(2), pages 406-428.
- Altonji, Joseph G. & Blank, Rebecca M., 1999.
"Race and gender in the labor market,"
Handbook of Labor Economics,
in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 48, pages 3143-3259
- Michal Myck & Gillian Paull, 2004.
"The role of employment experience in explaining the gender wage gap,"
IFS Working Papers
W04/16, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Michal Myck & Gillian Paull, 2001. "The role of employment experience in explaining the gender wage gap," IFS Working Papers W01/18, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- T.D. Stanley & Stephen B. Jarrell, 1998. "Gender Wage Discrimination Bias? A Meta-Regression Analysis," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 33(4), pages 947-973.
- T. Paul Schultz, 2003.
"Evidence of Returns to Schooling in Africa from Household Surveys: Monitoring and Restructuring the Market for Education,"
875, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
- T. Paul Schultz, 2004. "Evidence of Returns to Schooling in Africa from Household Surveys: Monitoring and Restructuring the Market for Education," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 13(02), pages ii95-ii148, December.
- Card, David, 1999. "The causal effect of education on earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 30, pages 1801-1863 Elsevier.
- Simon Appleton, 1996.
"The gender wage gap in three African countries,"
Economics Series Working Papers
WPS/1996-07, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Sahn, David E. & Alderman, Harold, 1988. "The effects of human capital on wages, and the determinants of labor supply in a developing country," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 157-183, September.
- Steven H. Sandell & David Shapiro, 1980. "Work Expectations, Human Capital Accumulation, and the Wages of Young Women," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 15(3), pages 335-353.
- John M. Barron & Mark C. Berger & Dan A. Black, 1997. "On-the-Job Training," Books from Upjohn Press, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research, number ojt, October.
- Oaxaca, Ronald L. & Ransom, Michael R., 1994. "On discrimination and the decomposition of wage differentials," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 5-21, March.
- O'Neill, June & Polachek, Solomon, 1993. "Why the Gender Gap in Wages Narrowed in the 1980s," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 205-28, January.
- Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000.
"Gender Differences in Pay,"
Journal of Economic Perspectives,
American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 75-99, Fall.
- Wright, Robert E & Ermisch, John F, 1991.
"Gender Discrimination in the British Labour Market: A Reassessment,"
Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(406), pages 508-22, May.
- Ermisch, John F & Wright, Robert E, 1988. "Gender Discrimination in the British Labour Market: A Reassessment," CEPR Discussion Papers 278, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Jacob Mincer & Boyan Jovanovic, 1982.
"Labor Mobility and Wages,"
NBER Working Papers
0357, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Light, Audrey & Ureta, Manuelita, 1995. "Early-Career Work Experience and Gender Wage Differentials," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 121-54, January.
- Goux, Dominique & Maurin, Eric, 1999. "Persistence of Interindustry Wage Differentials: A Reexamination Using Matched Worker-Firm Panel Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 17(3), pages 492-533, July.
- Glick, Peter & Sahn, David E, 1997. "Gender and Education Impacts on Employment and Earnings in West Africa: Evidence from Guinea," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(4), pages 793-823, July.
- 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.).
- David Neumark, 1988. "Employers' Discriminatory Behavior and the Estimation of Wage Discrimination," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 23(3), pages 279-295.
- Nicita, Alessandro & Razzaz, Susan, 2003. "Who benefits and how much? : how gender affects welfare impacts of a booming textile industry," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3029, The World Bank.
- Booth, Alison L. & Francesconi, Marco & Frank, Jeff, 2003. "A sticky floors model of promotion, pay, and gender," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 295-322, April.
- Cling, Jean-Pierre & Razafindrakoto, Mireille & Roubaud, Francois, 2005. "Export processing zones in Madagascar: a success story under threat?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 785-803, May.
- Shoshana Neuman & Ronald Oaxaca, 2004. "Wage Decompositions with Selectivity-Corrected Wage Equations: A Methodological Note," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 3-10, April.
- Behrman, Jere R., 1999. "Labor markets in developing countries," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 43, pages 2859-2939 Elsevier.
- Randall S. Brown & Marilyn Moon & Barbara S. Zoloth, 1980. "Incorporating Occupational Attainment in Studies of Male-Female Earnings Differentials," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 15(1), pages 3-28.
- Lee, Lung-Fei, 1983. "Generalized Econometric Models with Selectivity," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(2), pages 507-12, March.
- KUEPIE Mathias & DZOSSA Anaclet Désiré & KELODJOUE Samuel, 2013. "Determinants of labor market gender inequalities in Cameroon, Senegal and Mali: the role of human capital and the fertility burden," CEPS/INSTEAD Working Paper Series 2013-08, CEPS/INSTEAD.
- Christophe J. Nordman & François-Charles Wolff, 2007.
"Is There A Glass Ceiling in Morocco? Evidence from Matched Worker-Firm Data,"
0720, Economic Research Forum, revised Dec 2007.
- Christophe J. Nordman & François-Charles Wolff, 2009. "Is There a Glass Ceiling in Morocco? Evidence from Matched Worker--Firm Data," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 18(4), pages 592-633, August.
- Christophe Nordman & François-Charles Wolff, 2007. "Is there a glass ceiling in Morocco? Evidence from matched worker-firm data," Working Papers DT/2007/04, DIAL (Développement, Institutions et Mondialisation).
- Ssebagala, Richard, 2007. "Wage Determination and Gender Discrimination in Uganda," Research Series 150483, Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC).
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Maria Ana Lugo).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.