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Job tasks, computer use, and the decreasing part-time pay penalty for women in the UK

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  • Fouarge D.
  • Grip A. de
  • Elsayed A.E.A.

    (ROA)

Abstract

Using data from the UK Skills Surveys, we show that the part-time pay penalty for female workers within low- and medium-skilled occupations decreased significantly over the period 1997-2006. The convergence in computer use between part-time and full-time workers within these occupations explains a large share of the decrease in the part-time pay penalty. However, the lower part-time pay penalty is also related to lower wage returns to reading and writing which are performed more intensively by full-time workers. Conversely, the increasing returns to influencing has increased the part-time pay penalty despite the convergence in the influencing task input between part-time and full-time workers. The relative changes in the input and prices of computer use and job tasks together explain more than 50 percent of the decrease in the part-time pay penalty.

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Paper provided by Maastricht University, Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA) in its series ROA Research Memorandum with number 003.

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Date of creation: 2014
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Handle: RePEc:unm:umaror:2014003

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Keywords: Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity; Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials;

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  1. Sandra E. Black & Alexandra Spitz-Oener, 2010. "Explaining Women's Success: Technological Change and the Skill Content of Women's Work," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 187-194, February.
  2. Luis Garicano & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2006. "Organization and Inequality in a Knowledge Economy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(4), pages 1383-1435, November.
  3. Karen Mumford & Peter N. Smith, 2009. "What determines the part-time and gender earnings gaps in Britain: evidence from the workplace," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(suppl_1), pages i56-i75, April.
  4. Manning, Alan & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2007. "The Part-Time Pay Penalty for Women in Britain," CEPR Discussion Papers 6058, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. Booth, Alison L. & van Ours, Jan C., 2010. "Part-Time Jobs: What Women Want?," CEPR Discussion Papers 7627, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Elias, Peter & McKnight, Abigail, 2001. "Skill Measurement in Official Statistics: Recent Developments in the UK and the Rest of Europe," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(3), pages 508-40, July.
  9. Blau, Francine D & Kahn, Lawrence M, 1992. "The Gender Earnings Gap: Learning from International Comparisons," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 533-38, May.
  10. Görlich, Dennis & Snower, Dennis J., 2013. "Multitasking and Wages," CEPR Discussion Papers 9455, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. 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.
  12. Acemoglu, Daron & Autor, David, 2011. "Skills, Tasks and Technologies: Implications for Employment and Earnings," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
  13. Dennis Görlich & Dennis Snower, 2013. "Multitasking and Wages," CESifo Working Paper Series 4307, CESifo Group Munich.
  14. Sara Connolly & Mary Gregory, 2009. "The part-time pay penalty: earnings trajectories of British Women," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(suppl_1), pages i76-i97, April.
  15. Nabanita Datta Gupta & Ronald L. Oaxaca & Nina Smith, 2006. "Swimming upstream, floating downstream: Comparing women's relative wage progress in the United States and Denmark," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 59(2), pages 243-266, January.
  16. Lindley, Joanne, 2012. "The gender dimension of technical change and the role of task inputs," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 516-526.
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