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Wage determination and the gender pay gap: A feminist political economy analysis and decomposition


  • Maria Karamessini
  • Elias Ioakimoglou


This paper develops a heterodox analytical framework of wage determination and a new method of decomposition of the gender pay gap drawing on Marxian and feminist theories. The proposed framework utilizes two wage equations for the analysis of the gender gap: the first equation refers to average occupational wages and the second to individual wages as deviations from occupational wages. Using a data set for wages from industries in Greece, this paper demonstrates and explains differences in results between this proposed decomposition of the gender pay gap and that of Oaxaca-Blinder, and discusses the merits of this new technique compared to the Brown-Moon-Zoloth method. The authors argue that the main advantage of this proposed method of decomposition over the other two methods is that the proposed method allows for separate estimates of the impact of social and individual gender wage discrimination on the gender pay gap.

Suggested Citation

  • Maria Karamessini & Elias Ioakimoglou, 2007. "Wage determination and the gender pay gap: A feminist political economy analysis and decomposition," Feminist Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(1), pages 31-66.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:femeco:v:13:y:2007:i:1:p:31-66
    DOI: 10.1080/13545700601075088

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. William T. Dickens, 1986. "Wages, Employment and the Threat of Collective Action by Workers," NBER Working Papers 1856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Francine D. Blau & Lawrence M. Kahn, 2003. "Understanding International Differences in the Gender Pay Gap," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 106-144, January.
    3. William T. Dickens & Lawrence F. Katz, 1986. "Interindustry Wage Differences and Industry Characteristics," NBER Working Papers 2014, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Platt, Jonathan & Prins, Seth & Bates, Lisa & Keyes, Katherine, 2016. "Unequal depression for equal work? How the wage gap explains gendered disparities in mood disorders," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 149(C), pages 1-8.

    More about this item


    Wage determination; gender pay gap; decomposition method; JEL Codes: J16; J31; E11;

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • E11 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Marxian; Sraffian; Kaleckian


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