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Gender gaps and the rise of the service economy

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  • Ngai, L. Rachel
  • Petrongolo, Barbara

Abstract

This paper investigates the role of the rise of services in the narrowing of gender gaps in hours and wages in recent decades. We document the between-industry component of the rise in female work for the U.S., and propose a model economy with goods, services and home production, in which women have a comparative advantage in producing market and home services. The rise of services, driven by structural transformation and marketization of home production, acts as a gender-biased demand shift raising women's relative wages and market hours. Quantitatively, the model accounts for an important share of the observed trends.

Suggested Citation

  • Ngai, L. Rachel & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2014. "Gender gaps and the rise of the service economy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58152, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:58152
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    gender gaps; structural transformation; marketization;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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