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Globalization: a woman’s best friend? Exporters andthe gender wage gap

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  • Bøler, Esther Ann
  • Javorcik, Beata
  • Ulltveit-Moe, Karen Helene

Abstract

While the impact of globalization on income inequality has received a lot of attention, little is known about its effect on the gender wage gap (GWG). This study argues that there is a systematic difference in the GWG between exporting firms and non-exporters. By the virtue of being exposed to higher competition, exporters require greater commitment and flexibility from their employees. If commitment is not easily observable and women are perceived as less committed workers than men, exporters will statistically discriminate against female employees and will exhibit a higher GWG than non-exporters. We test this hypothesis using matched employer-employee data from the Norwegian manufacturing sector from 1996 to 2010. Our identification strategy relies on an exogenous shock, namely, the legislative changes that increased the length of the parental leave that is available only to fathers. We argue that these changes have narrowed the perceived commitment gap between the genders and show that the initially higher GWG observed in exporting firms relative to nonexporters has gone down after the changes took place.

Suggested Citation

  • Bøler, Esther Ann & Javorcik, Beata & Ulltveit-Moe, Karen Helene, 2015. "Globalization: a woman’s best friend? Exporters andthe gender wage gap," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62604, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:62604
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Shepherd, Ben & Stone, Susan, 2017. "Trade and Women," ADBI Working Papers 648, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    2. Dauth, Wolfgang & Findeisen, Sebastian & Südekum, Jens, 2016. "Adjusting to Globalization - Evidence from Worker-Establishment Matches in Germany," CEPR Discussion Papers 11045, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Bertocchi, Graziella & Bozzano, Monica, 2016. "Women, medieval commerce, and the education gender gap," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 496-521.
    4. Priit Vahter & Jaan Masso, 2018. "The Contribution Of Multinationals To Wage Inequality: Foreign Ownership And The Gender Pay Gap," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 106, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
    5. Lucifora, Claudio & Vigani, Daria, 2016. "What If Your Boss Is a Woman? Work Organization, Work-Life Balance and Gender Discrimination at the Workplace," IZA Discussion Papers 9737, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Janneke Pieters, 2015. "Trade liberalization and gender inequality," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 114-114, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Exporters; globalisation; gender wage gap;

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • F14 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Empirical Studies of Trade
    • F16 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Trade and Labor Market Interactions
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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