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Estimating gender differences in access to jobs: females trapped at the bottom of the ladder

  • Laurent Gobillon

    (LEA - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée - INRA : UR1043, CREST - Centre de Recherche en Économie et Statistique - INSEE - École Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Administration Économique, CEPR - Center for Economic Policy Research - CEPR, INED - Institut National d'Etudes Démographiques Paris - INED, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)

  • Dominique Meurs

    (INED - Institut National d'Etudes Démographiques Paris - INED, EconomiX - CNRS : UMR7166 - Université de Paris X - Nanterre)

  • Sébastien Roux

    ()

    (LEA - Laboratoire d'Economie Appliquée - INRA : UR1043, CREST - Centre de Recherche en Économie et Statistique - INSEE - École Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Administration Économique, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)

In this paper, we propose a job assignment model allowing for a gender difference in access to jobs. Males and females compete for the same job positions. They are primarily interested in the best-paid jobs. A structural relationship of the model can be used to empirically recover the probability ratio of females and males getting a given job position. As this ratio is allowed to vary with the rank of jobs in the wage distribution of positions, barriers in females' access to high-paid jobs can be detected and quantiffed. We estimate the gender relative probability of getting any given job position for full-time executives aged 40-45 in the private sector. This is done using an exhaustive French administrative dataset on wage bills. Our results show that the access to any job position is lower for females than for males. Also, females' access decreases with the rank of job positions in the wage distribution, which is consistent with females being faced with more barriers to high-paid jobs than to low-paid jobs. At the bottom of the wage distribution, the probability of females getting a job is 12% lower than the probability of males. The difference in probability is far larger at the top of the wage distribution and climbs to 50%.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series Working Papers with number halshs-00575011.

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Date of creation: Sep 2009
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Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-00575011
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  1. Winter-Ebmer, Rudolf & Zweimuller, Josef, 1997. "Unequal Assignment and Unequal Promotion in Job Ladders," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 43-71, January.
  2. Ridder, G. & Tunali, I., 1997. "Stratified Partial Likelihood Estimation," Papers 1997/17, Koc University.
  3. Tuomas Pekkarinen & Juhana Vartiainen, 2006. "Gender differences in promotion on a job ladder: Evidence from Finnish metalworkers," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 59(2), pages 285-301, January.
  4. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Duranton, Gilles & Gobillon, Laurent & Puga, Diego & Roux, Sébastien, 2012. "The Productivity Advantages of Large Cities: Distinguishing Agglomeration from Firm Selection," IZA Discussion Papers 6502, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Donald, Stephen G & Green, David A & Paarsch, Harry J, 2000. "Differences in Wage Distributions between Canada and the United States: An Application of a Flexible Estimator of Distribution Functions in the Presence of Covariates," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(4), pages 609-33, October.
  6. Mark R. Killingsworth & Cordelia W. Reimers, 1983. "Race, ranking, promotions, and pay at a federal facility: A logit analysis," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 37(1), pages 92-107, October.
  7. Albrecht, James & Björklund, Anders & Vroman, Susan, 2001. "Is There a Glass Ceiling in Sweden?," IZA Discussion Papers 282, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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