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The Persistent Gender Earnings Gap in Colombia, 1994-2006

  • Hoyos, Alejandro

    (Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Nopo, Hugo

    ()

    (Inter-American Development Bank)

  • Peña, Ximena

    ()

    (Universidad de los Andes)

This paper surveys gender earnings gaps in Colombia from 1994 to 2006, using matching comparisons to examine the extent to which individuals with similar human capital characteristics earn different wages. Three sub-periods are considered: 1994-1998; 2000-2001; and 2002- 2006, corresponding to the economic cycle of the Colombian economy. The gaps dropped from the first to the second period but remained almost unchanged between the second and the third. The gender earnings gap remains largely unexplained after controlling for different combinations of socio-demographics and job-related characteristics, reaching between 13 and 23 percent of average female earnings. That gap is lower at the middle of the wage distributions than the extremes, possibly due to a gender-equalizing effect of the minimum wage. Moreover, the gap is more pronounced for low-productivity workers and those who need flexibility to participate in labor markets. This suggests that policy interventions in the form of labor market regulations may have little impact on reducing gender earnings gaps.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5073.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: 'New Century, Old Disparities. Gender and Ethnic Earnings Gaps in Latin America and the Caribbean', World Bank Publications, 2012
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5073
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  1. Alejandro Badel & Ximena Peña, 2010. "Decomposing the Gender Wage Gap with Sample Selection Adjustment: Evidence from Colombia," Revista de Analisis Economico – Economic Analysis Review, Ilades-Georgetown University, Universidad Alberto Hurtado/School of Economics and Bussines, vol. 25(2), pages 169-191, Diciembre.
  2. James Albrecht & Anders Bjorklund & Susan Vroman, 2003. "Is There a Glass Ceiling in Sweden?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(1), pages 145-177, January.
  3. Luisa Fernanda Bernat, 2009. "¿Quienes son las mujeres discriminadas?: enfoque distributivo de las diferencias salariales por género," BORRADORES DE ECONOMÍA Y FINANZAS 005242, UNIVERSIDAD ICESI.
  4. Wendy Cunningham, 2007. "Minimum Wages and Social Policy : Lessons from Developing Countries," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6760, September.
  5. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2005. "Do Women Shy Away from Competition? Do Men Compete too Much?," Discussion Papers 04-030, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  6. Adriana Camacho & Emily Conover & Alejandro Hoyos, 2009. "Effects of Colombia's Social Protection System on Workers' Choice between Formal and Informal Employment," DOCUMENTOS CEDE 006003, UNIVERSIDAD DE LOS ANDES-CEDE.
  7. De la Rica Goiricelaya, Sara & Dolado, Juan J. & Llorens, Vanessa, 2005. "Ceilings and Floors? Gender Wage Gaps by Education in Spain," DFAEII Working Papers 2005-01, University of the Basque Country - Department of Foundations of Economic Analysis II.
  8. Diego F. ANGEL URDINOLA & Quentin WODON, 2003. "The gender wage Gap and poverty in Colombia," ARCHIVOS DE ECONOMÍA 003596, DEPARTAMENTO NACIONAL DE PLANEACIÓN.
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