The Wage Structure and the Sorting of Workers into the Public Sector
AbstractThis paper uses data from the U.S. Decennial Census and the Current Population Surveys to document the differential shifts that occurred in the wage structures of the public and privatesectors between 1960 and 2000. The wage gap between the typical public sector worker and a comparable private sector worker was relatively constant for men during this period, but declined substantially for women. Equally important, wage dispersion in the public sector was increasing relative to wage dispersion in the private sector prior to 1970, at the time when public sector employment was rising rapidly. Since 1970, however, there has been a significant relative compression of the wage distribution in the public sector. The different evolutions of the wage structures in the two sectors are an important determinant of the sorting of workers across sectors. As a result of the relative wage compression, the public sector found it increasingly more difficult to attract and retain high-skill workers
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 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9313.
Date of creation: Nov 2002
Date of revision:
Note: LS PE
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J3 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs
- J4 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
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.:
- Rebecca M. Blank, 1985. "An analysis of workers' choice between employment in the public and private sectors," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 38(2), pages 211-224, January.
- Craig, Lee A., 1995. "The Political Economy of Public-Private Compensation Differentials: The Case of Federal Pensions," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 55(02), pages 304-320, June.
- Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "A Reexamination of the Federal-Private Wage Differential in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 270-93, April.
- Greg Hundley, 1993. "The Effects of Comparable Worth in the Public Sector on Public/Private Occupational Relative Wages," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 28(2), pages 318-342.
- Katz, L.F. & Krueger, A.B., 1991.
"Chances In The Structure Of Wages In The Public And Private Sectors,"
Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers
1547, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Lawrence Katz & Alan Krueger, 1991. "Changes in the Structure of Wages in the Public and Private Sectors," Working Papers 662, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
- Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1991. "Changes in the Structure of Wages in the Public and Private Sectors," NBER Working Papers 3667, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- David Autor & Lawrence Katz & Alan Krueger, 1997.
"Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed the Labor Market?,"
756, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
- David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1998. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed The Labor Market?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 113(4), pages 1169-1213, November.
- David H. Autor & Lawrence F. Katz & Alan B. Krueger, 1997. "Computing Inequality: Have Computers Changed the Labor Market?," NBER Working Papers 5956, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- William J. Moore & Robert J. Newman, 1991. "Government wage differentials in a municipal labor market: The case of Houston Metropolitan Transit workers," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 45(1), pages 145-153, October.
- Juhn, Chinhui & Murphy, Kevin M & Pierce, Brooks, 1993. "Wage Inequality and the Rise in Returns to Skill," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 410-42, June.
- Borjas, George J, 1980. "Wage Determination in the Federal Government: The Role of Constituents and Bureaucrats," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(6), pages 1110-47, December.
- Borjas, George J, 1982. "The Politics of Employment Discrimination in the Federal Bureaucracy," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 25(2), pages 271-99, October.
- Katz, Lawrence F. & Autor, David H., 1999. "Changes in the wage structure and earnings inequality," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 26, pages 1463-1555 Elsevier.
- Alan Krueger, 1987.
"The Determinants of Queues for Federal Jobs,"
607, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
- Murphy, Kevin M & Welch, Finis, 1992. "The Structure of Wages," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(1), pages 285-326, February.
- Richard B. Freeman, 1991. "How Much Has De-Unionisation Contributed to the Rise in Male Earnings Inequality?," NBER Working Papers 3826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ronald G. Ehrenberg & Joshua L. Schwarz, 1983.
"Public Sector Labor Markets,"
NBER Working Papers
1179, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Borjas, George J, 1984. "Electoral Cycles and the Earnings of Federal Bureaucrats," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 22(4), pages 447-59, October.
- Joseph Gyourko & Joseph Tracy, 1986.
"An Analysis of Public and Private Sector Wages Allowing for Endogenous Choices of Both Government and Union Status,"
NBER Working Papers
1920, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Gyourko, Joseph & Tracy, Joseph, 1988. "An Analysis of Public- and Private-Sector Wages Allowing for Endogenous Choices of Both Government and Union Status," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(2), pages 229-53, April.
- Jeffrey M. Perloff & Michael L. Wachter, 1984. "Wage comparability in the U.S. postal service," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 38(1), pages 26-37, October.
- Richard A. Ippolito, 1987. "Why Federal Workers Don't Quit," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 22(2), pages 281-299.
- Black, Matthew & Moffitt, Robert & Warner, John T, 1990. "The Dynamics of Job Separation: The Case of Federal Employees," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 5(3), pages 245-62, July-Sept.
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.