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Gender Differences in Education

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  • Pekkarinen, Tuomas

    (VATT, Helsinki)

Abstract

This paper surveys the trends in gender gaps in education, their causes and potential policy implications. I show that female educational attainment has surpassed, or is about to surpass, male educational attainment in most industrialized countries. These gaps reflect male overrepresentation among secondary school drop-outs and female overrepresentation among tertiary education students and graduates. Existing evidence suggests that this pattern is a result of a combination of increasing returns to education and lower female effort costs of education. Widening gender gap in education combined with recent wage and employment polarization will likely lead to widening inequalities and is linked to declining male labor force participation. The paper discusses evidence on educational policies that both widen and reduce gender gaps in educational outcomes.

Suggested Citation

  • Pekkarinen, Tuomas, 2012. "Gender Differences in Education," IZA Discussion Papers 6390, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6390
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Asena Caner & Cahit Guven & Cagla Okten & Seyhun Orcan Sakalli, 2016. "Gender Roles and the Education Gender Gap in Turkey," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 1231-1254, December.
    2. Guisinger, Amy Y., 2020. "Gender differences in the volatility of work hours and labor demand," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C).
    3. Bizopoulou, Aspasia, 2019. "Job Tasks and Gender Wage Gaps within Occupations," Working Papers 124, VATT Institute for Economic Research.
    4. Nadir Altinok & Claude Diebolt & Jean-Luc Demeulemeester, 2014. "A new international database on education quality: 1965--2010," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(11), pages 1212-1247, April.
    5. Westphal, Matthias & Kamhöfer, Daniel A. & Schmitz, Hendrik, 2020. "Marginal college wage premiums under selection into employment," DICE Discussion Papers 341, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
    6. Nadir Altinok & Abdurrahman Aydemir, 2015. "The Unfolding of Gender Gap in Education," Working Papers halshs-01204805, HAL.
    7. Caner, Asena & Demirel-Derebasoglu, Merve & Okten, Cagla, 2019. "Attainment and Gender Equality in Higher Education: Evidence from a Large Scale Expansion," IZA Discussion Papers 12711, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    8. Stimpfle, Alexander & Stadelmann, David, 2016. "Marriage Age Affects Educational Gender Inequality: International Evidence," VfS Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145492, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    9. Doris, Aedín & O’Neill, Donal & Sweetman, Olive, 2013. "Gender, single-sex schooling and maths achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 104-119.
    10. Charness, Gary & Dao, Lien & Shurchkov, Olga, 2022. "Competing now and then: The effects of delay on competitiveness across gender," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 198(C), pages 612-630.
    11. Rampino, Tina & P. Taylor, Mark, 2013. "Gender differences in educational aspirations and attitudes," ISER Working Paper Series 2013-15, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    12. Elena Kotyrlo & Elena Varshavskaya, 2022. "Impact of the compulsory military service reform of 2007–2008 on the demand for higher education," Economics of Transition and Institutional Change, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 30(4), pages 715-735, October.
    13. Mohammed Ibrahim Aldaghir, 2018. "Do Morning Classes Improve Student Learning of Microeconomics Principles?," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 24(2), pages 163-177, May.
    14. Högberg, Björn, 2021. "Educational stressors and secular trends in school stress and mental health problems in adolescents," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 270(C).
    15. Mi Dai & Jianwei Xu, 2017. "The Skill Structure of Export Wage Premium: Evidence from Chinese Matched Employer–Employee Data," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(5), pages 883-905, May.
    16. Nadir ALTINOK, 2017. "Analyse critique et méthodologique des données d‘éducation de l’Afrique subsaharienne," Working Paper 688bd54b-760c-443b-8343-7, Agence française de développement.
    17. Alecke, Björn & Burgard, Claudia & Mitze, Timo, 2013. "The Effect of Tuition Fees on Student Enrollment and Location Choice – Interregional Migration, Border Effects and Gender Differences," Ruhr Economic Papers 404, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    18. Ilya Prakhov & Maria Bocharova, 2016. "Socio-Economic Predictors of Student Mobility," HSE Working papers WP BRP 34/EDU/2016, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    19. Albrecht, James & Skogman Thoursie, Peter & Vroman, Susan, 2015. "Parental leave and the glass ceiling in Sweden," Working Paper Series 2015:4, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    20. Zoltan Hermann & Marianna Kopasz, 2018. "Educational policies and the gender gap in test scores: A cross-country analysis," Budapest Working Papers on the Labour Market 1805, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies.
    21. Ida Lovén & Cecilia Hammarlund & Martin Nordin, 2020. "Staying or leaving? The effects of university availability on educational choices and rural depopulation," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 99(5), pages 1339-1365, October.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    gender differences; test scores; education;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I20 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - General
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity

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