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A New Method for Estimating Public Sector Pay Premia: Evidence from Britain in the 1990's

  • Disney, Richard F
  • Gosling, Amanda

This Paper looks at public sector pay in Britain. We present a novel instrument that exploits the variation in public sector status across individuals arising from the privatisation programme of the 1990s. We show formally that results that are estimated may thereby be robust to self-selection and measurement error, both of which are important and which bias cross-sectional estimates. Our results suggest that women in the public sector earn more then they could elsewhere, whilst, on average, men do not.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 3787.

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Date of creation: Feb 2003
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3787
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  1. Mueller, Richard E., 1998. "Public-private sector wage differentials in Canada: evidence from quantile regressions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 229-235, August.
  2. Bender, Keith A, 1998. " The Central Government-Private Sector Wage Differential," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(2), pages 177-220, April.
  3. Morley Gunderson, 1979. "Earnings Differentials between the Public and Private Sectors," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 12(2), pages 228-42, May.
  4. Freeman, Richard Barry, 1984. "Longitudinal Analyses of the Effects of Trade Unions," Scholarly Articles 4631951, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  5. Andrew Henley & Dennis Thomas, 2001. "Public Service Employment and the Public- Private Wage Differential in British Regions," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 35(3), pages 229-240.
  6. Bales, Sarah & Rama, Martin, 2001. "Are public sector workers underpaid? - Appropriate comparators in a developing country," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2747, The World Bank.
  7. Borland, Jeff & Hirschberg, Joe & Lye, Jenny, 1998. "Earnings of Public Sector and Private Sector Employees in Australia: Is There a Difference?," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 74(224), pages 36-53, March.
  8. Blackaby, D. H. & Murphy, P. D. & O'Leary, N. C., 1999. "The payment of public sector workers in the UK: reconciliation with North American findings," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 239-243, November.
  9. Terrell, Katherine, 1993. "Public-private wage differentials in Haiti Do public servants earn a rent?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 293-314, December.
  10. David Card, 1996. "Deregulation and Labor Earnings in the Airline Industry," NBER Working Papers 5687, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Blaise Melly, 2005. "Public-private sector wage differentials in Germany: Evidence from quantile regression," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 505-520, 09.
  12. Rees, Hedley & Shah, Anup, 1995. "Public-Private Sector Wage Differential in the U.K," The Manchester School of Economic & Social Studies, University of Manchester, vol. 63(1), pages 52-68, March.
  13. Pederson, P. J. & Schmidt-Sorensen, J. B. & Smith, N. & Westergard-Nielsen, N., 1990. "Wage differentials between the public and private sectors," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 125-145, February.
  14. van der Gaag, Jacques & Vijverberg, Wim, 1988. "A Switching Regression Model for Wage Determinants in the Public and Private Sectors of a Developing Country," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(2), pages 244-52, May.
  15. Richard Disney & Amanda Gosling, 1998. "Does it pay to work in the public sector?," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 19(4), pages 347-374, November.
  16. van Ophem, Hans, 1993. "A Modified Switching Regression Model for Earnings Differentials between the Public and Private Sectors in the Netherlands," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(2), pages 215-24, May.
  17. James M. Poterba & Kim S. Rueben, 1994. "The Distribution of Public Sector Wage Premia: New Evidence Using Quantile Regression Methods," NBER Working Papers 4734, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Dustmann, Christian & van Soest, Arthur, 1998. "Public and private sector wages of male workers in Germany," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(8), pages 1417-1441, September.
  19. Haskel, Jonathan & Szymanski, Stefan, 1993. "Privatization, Liberalization, Wages and Employment: Theory and Evidence for the UK," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 60(238), pages 161-81, May.
  20. Swaffield, Joanna K, 2001. " Does Measurement Error Bias Fixed-Effects Estimates of the Union Wage Effect?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(4), pages 437-57, September.
  21. George J. Borjas, 2002. "The Wage Structure and the Sorting of Workers into the Public Sector," NBER Working Papers 9313, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Card, David, 1996. "The Effect of Unions on the Structure of Wages: A Longitudinal Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(4), pages 957-79, July.
  23. Michael Rosholm & Helena Skyt Nielsen, 2001. "The public-private sector wage gap in Zambia in the 1990s: A quantile regression approach," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 26(1), pages 169-182.
  24. Sharon P. Smith, 1976. "Pay differential between federal government and private sector workers," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 29(2), pages 179-197, January.
  25. Stephen Nickell & Glenda Quintini, 2002. "The Consequences of The Decline in Public Sector Pay in Britain: A Little Bit of Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(477), pages F107-F118, February.
  26. Moulton, Brent R, 1990. "A Reexamination of the Federal-Private Wage Differential in the United States," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 8(2), pages 270-93, April.
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