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Gender differences in estimated salaries: A UK study


  • Furnham, Adrain
  • Wilson, Emma


In all 294 British participants completed a two page questionnaire entitled “How much do people earn?” Using a between-subjects design, participants either completed the male or female target questionnaire. Specifically, they were given names and age ranges (range 35–43) of people in 16 gender-neutral jobs from Accountant to Veterinarian and asked to estimate their current average annual salary. Supporting previous research, the “salary estimation effect” was found with males assumed to earn more than their female counterparts in a range of occupations, most notably in unskilled/semi-skilled jobs. Participants also demonstrated good awareness of the current average annual salary in the UK and over half of participants believed wage disparities to exist between men and women; whites and blacks. Implications for salary decision-making and perpetuation of the differential salaries afforded to men and women are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Furnham, Adrain & Wilson, Emma, 2011. "Gender differences in estimated salaries: A UK study," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 623-630.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:soceco:v:40:y:2011:i:5:p:623-630 DOI: 10.1016/j.socec.2011.04.019

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ana Rute Cardoso & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2007. "Mentoring and Segregation: Female-Led Firms and Gender Wage Policies," Economics working papers 2007-20, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
    2. Boeri, Tito & Del Boca, Daniela & Pissarides, Christopher (ed.), 2005. "Women at Work: An Economic Perspective," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199281886, June.
    3. Mora, Toni & Ferrer-i-Carbonell, Ada, 2009. "The job satisfaction gender gap among young recent university graduates: Evidence from Catalonia," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 581-589, August.
    4. Canton, E.J.F. & Verheul, I., 2009. "Gender Pay Differences in the European Union: Do Higher Wages Make Up For Discrimination?," ERIM Report Series Research in Management ERS-2009-041-ORG, Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
    5. Mitra, Aparna, 2003. "Establishment size, employment, and the gender wage gap," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 317-330, July.
    6. Blau Francine D & Kahn Lawrence M, 2007. "The Gender Pay Gap," The Economists' Voice, De Gruyter, vol. 4(4), pages 1-6, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Adrian Furnham & Sophie Stumm & Mark Fenton-O’Creevy, 2015. "Sex Differences in Money Pathology in the General Population," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 123(3), pages 701-711, September.
    2. Josep-Oriol Escardíbul & Toni Mora, 2013. "Teacher gender and student performance in mathematics. Evidence from Catalonia," Working Papers 2013/7, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).

    More about this item


    Gender; Money; Salaries;

    JEL classification:

    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials


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