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It’s a Man’s Job: Income and the Gender Gap in Industrial Research

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  • Karin Hoisl

    (University of Mannheim, 68161 Mannheim, Germany; Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition, 80539 Munich, Germany; and Copenhagen Business School, DK-2000 Frederiksberg, Copenhagen)

  • Myriam Mariani

    (Department of Policy Analysis and Public Management and CRIOS (Center for Research on Innovation, Organization and Strategy), Bocconi University, 20136 Milan, Italy)

Abstract

This study examines differences in income and job performance between women and men in creative, highly skilled jobs tasked with achieving technological inventions. By building on data pertaining to 9,692 inventors from 23 countries, this study shows that female inventors represent only 4.2% of total inventors, and they earn about 14% less than their male peers. The gap persists even when controlling for sources of heterogeneity, the selection of inventors into types of jobs and tasks, and potential parenthood, instrumented by exploiting a source of variation related to religious practices. The income gap is not associated with differences in the quality of the inventions that female and male inventors produce. Thus, even in this human capital–intensive profession, where capabilities and education are important assets, and productivity differentials can be observed, women earn less than men, though they contribute to the development of high-quality inventions as much as men do.

Suggested Citation

  • Karin Hoisl & Myriam Mariani, 2017. "It’s a Man’s Job: Income and the Gender Gap in Industrial Research," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 63(3), pages 766-790, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:63:y:2017:i:3:p:766-790
    DOI: 10.1287/mnsc.2015.2357
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