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The Female Labor Force and Long-Run Development: The American Experience in Comparative Perspective

In: Human Capital in History: The American Record

Listed author(s):
  • Claudia Olivetti

This paper provides additional evidence on the U-shaped relationship between the process of economic development and women's labor force participation. The experience of the United States is studied in a comparative perspective relative to a sample of rich economies observed over the period 1890-2005. The analysis confirms the existence of a U-shaped female labor supply function, coming from both cross-country and within country variation. Further analysis of a large cross section of economies observed over the post-WWII period suggests that the timing of a country's transition to a modern path of economic development affects the shape of women's labor supply.

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This chapter was published in:
  • Leah Platt Boustan & Carola Frydman & Robert A. Margo, 2014. "Human Capital in History: The American Record," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number bous12-1, October.
  • This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 12892.
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberch:12892
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    1. Stefania Albanesi & Claudia Olivetti, 2016. "Gender Roles and Medical Progress," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 124(3), pages 650-695.
    2. Dora L. Costa, 2000. "From Mill Town to Board Room: The Rise of Women's Paid Labor," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(4), pages 101-122, Fall.
    3. James Feyrer & Bruce Sacerdote & Ariel Dora Stern, 2008. "Will the Stork Return to Europe and Japan? Understanding Fertility within Developed Nations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 22(3), pages 3-22, Summer.
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    11. Claudia Olivetti & Barbara Petrongolo, 2011. "Gender Gaps Across Countries and Skills: Supply, Demand and the Industry Structure," CEP Discussion Papers dp1093, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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    16. Goldin, Claudia & Sokoloff, Kenneth, 1982. "Women, Children, and Industrialization in the Early Republic: Evidence from the Manufacturing Censuses," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 42(04), pages 741-774, December.
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    22. repec:hrv:faseco:30703977 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Akbulut, Rahşan, 2011. "Sectoral Changes And The Increase In Women'S Labor Force Participation," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(02), pages 240-264, April.
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    28. repec:hrv:faseco:33077826 is not listed on IDEAS
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