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Gender Pay Gap in Poland

  • Michał Grajek

    ()

In this paper we examine the gender pay gap in Poland over 1987–1996, i.e., shortly before and during the transition to market economy. The principle source of data used throughout the paper is the Household Budget Survey conducted by the Polish Central Statistical Office. The study documents three major results. First, the transition to market economy in Poland favored women substantially in terms of relative earnings differentials. The gender pay gap decreased by 10.2 log% points and the position of mean female in male wage distribution went up by 9.9 percentiles over 1987–1996. By 1995, the values of these measures reached the level observed in industrial economies such as the U.K., Austria, Italy or Australia. Second, rising relative skills of women and rising returns to skills explain about half of the fall in the gender pay gap over 1987–1996. Third, the pay gap did not follow a smooth adjustment process. 1989, the year of the first democratic parliamentary elections, which resulted in forming the first non-communist government, saw the most spectacular change, although actual market reforms began one year after. The changes in the early phase of the transition were mostly driven by sudden shifts in relative wages and employment across industries. Afterwards, the pay gap measures stabilized, partly because rising overall wage inequalities offset the advantages of females due to observed skills. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/B:ECOP.0000005729.71467.38
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Article provided by Springer in its journal Economics of Planning.

Volume (Year): 36 (2003)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 23-44

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Handle: RePEc:kap:ecopln:v:36:y:2003:i:1:p:23-44
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  1. Keane, Michael P. & Prasad, Eswar S., 2006. "Changes in the structure of earnings during the Polish transition," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(2), pages 389-427, August.
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  3. Jan Rutkowski, 1996. "High skills pay off: the changing wage structure during economic transition in Poland," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 4(1), pages 89-112, 05.
  4. Hunt, Jennifer, 1998. "The Transition in East Germany: When is a Ten Point Fall in the Gender Wage Gap Bad News?," CEPR Discussion Papers 1805, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  7. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2000. "Gender Differences in Pay," NBER Working Papers 7732, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Milan Vodopivec & Peter F. Orazem, 2000. "Male-female differences in labor market outcomes during the early transition to market: The cases of Estonia and Slovenia," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 283-303.
  9. Constantin G. Ogloblin, 1999. "The Gender earnings differential in the Russian transition economy," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(4), pages 602-627, July.
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