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Gender Differences in Job Assignment and Promotion on a Complexity Ladder of Jobs

Author

Listed:
  • Pekkarinen, Tuomas

    () (VATT, Helsinki)

  • Vartiainen, Juhana

    () (affiliation not available)

Abstract

This paper studies gender differences in the allocation of workers across jobs of different complexity using panel data on Finnish metalworkers. These data provide a measure for the complexity of the workers' tasks that can be used to construct a complexity ladder of jobs. We study whether women have to meet higher productivity requirements than men in order to be assigned to more complex tasks. Gender differences in the promotion rates are examined. We use productivity measures that are based on the supervisors' performance evaluations and examine gender differences in the productivity of promoted and non-promoted workers. It is found that women start their careers in less complex tasks than men and that they are also less likely to get promoted than men who start in similar tasks. When we compare the productivity of men and women, both at the initial assignment and when some of these individuals have been promoted, we find that there is no gender-related productivity differential at the time of the initial assignment, but women become on average more productive than men afterwards, both in promoted and non-promoted subsets. The most plausible interpretation of these results is that women face a higher promotion threshold than men.

Suggested Citation

  • Pekkarinen, Tuomas & Vartiainen, Juhana, 2004. "Gender Differences in Job Assignment and Promotion on a Complexity Ladder of Jobs," IZA Discussion Papers 1184, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp1184
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Larry D. Singell & John M. McDowell & James P. Ziliak, 1999. "Cracks in the Glass Ceiling: Gender and Promotion in the Economics Profession," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 392-396, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:pri:indrel:dsp01n009w2307 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Antonczyk Dirk & Leuschner Ute & Fitzenberger Bernd, 2009. "Can a Task-Based Approach Explain the Recent Changes in the German Wage Structure?," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 229(2-3), pages 214-238, April.
    3. George-Levi Gayle & Limor Golan & Robert A. Miller, 2012. "Gender Differences in Executive Compensation and Job Mobility," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(4), pages 829-872.
    4. Lundborg, Per, 2005. "Wage Fairness, Growth and the Utilization of R&D Workers," Working Paper Series 206, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
    5. Alan Manning & Joanna Swaffield, 2008. "The gender gap in early-career wage growth," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(530), pages 983-1024, July.
    6. Francine Blau & Jed DeVaro, 2006. "New Evidence on Gender Differences in Promotion Rates: An Empirical Analysis of a Sample of New Hires," Working Papers 891, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    7. Lundborg, Per, 2005. "Wage Theories for the Swedish Labour Market," Working Paper Series 207, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.
    8. repec:eti:dpaper:13038 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Selén, Jan & Ståhlberg, Ann-Charlotte, 2004. "Wage and Compensation Inequality — How Different?," Working Paper Series 197, Trade Union Institute for Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    discrimination; gender wage gap; promotions;

    JEL classification:

    • J0 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General
    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination

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