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Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Sex Discrimination

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  • Cardoso, Ana Rute

    () (IAE Barcelona (CSIC))

  • Guimaraes, Paulo

    () (Banco de Portugal)

  • Portugal, Pedro

    () (Banco de Portugal)

Abstract

Earlier literature on the gender pay gap has taught us that occupations matter and so do firms. However, the role of the firm has received little scrutiny; occupations have most often been coded in a rather aggregate way, lumping together different jobs; and the use of samples of workers prevents any reliable determination of either the extent of segregation or the relative importance of access to firms versus occupations. Our contribution is twofold. We provide a clear measure of the impact of the allocation of workers to firms and to job titles shaping the gender pay gap. We also provide a methodological contribution that combines the estimation of sets of high-dimensional fixed effects and Gelbach's (2009) unambiguous decomposition of the conditional gap. We find that one fifth of the gender pay gap results from segregation of workers across firms and one fifth from job segregation. We also show that the widely documented glass ceiling effect operates mainly through worker allocation to firms rather than occupations.

Suggested Citation

  • Cardoso, Ana Rute & Guimaraes, Paulo & Portugal, Pedro, 2012. "Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Sex Discrimination," IZA Discussion Papers 7109, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7109
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. 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.
    2. Addison, John T. & Centeno, Mario & Portugal, Pedro, 2004. "Reservation Wages, Search Duration, and Accepted Wages in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 1252, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Doris Weichselbaumer & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2005. "A Meta-Analysis of the International Gender Wage Gap," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 479-511, July.
    4. Paulo Guimarães & Pedro Portugal, 2010. "A simple feasible procedure to fit models with high-dimensional fixed effects," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 10(4), pages 628-649, December.
    5. Claudia Olivetti & Barbara Petrongolo, 2008. "Unequal Pay or Unequal Employment? A Cross-Country Analysis of Gender Gaps," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(4), pages 621-654, October.
    6. Stephen B. Jarrell & T. D. Stanley, 2004. "Declining Bias and Gender Wage Discrimination? A Meta-Regression Analysis," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 39(3).
    7. Nicole M. Fortin & Michael Huberman, 2002. "Occupational Gender Segregation and Women's Wages in Canada: An Historical Perspective," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 28(s1), pages 11-39, May.
    8. Torres, Sónia & Portugal, Pedro & Addison, John T. & Guimaraes, Paulo, 2013. "The Sources of Wage Variation: A Three-Way High-Dimensional Fixed Effects Regression Model," IZA Discussion Papers 7276, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. Xin Meng & Dominique Meurs, 2004. "The gender earnings gap: effects of institutions and firms--a comparative study of French and Australian private firms," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(2), pages 189-208, April.
    10. David Blackaby & Alison L Booth & Jeff Frank, 2005. "Outside Offers And The Gender Pay Gap: Empirical Evidence From the UK Academic Labour Market," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(501), pages 81-107, February.
    11. Kunze, Astrid, 2005. "The evolution of the gender wage gap," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 73-97, February.
    12. Woodcock, Simon D., 2008. "Wage differentials in the presence of unobserved worker, firm, and match heterogeneity," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 771-793, August.
    13. Baldwin, Marjorie L & Butler, Richard J & Johnson, William G, 2001. "A Hierarchical Theory of Occupational Segregation and Wage Discrimination," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 39(1), pages 94-110, January.
    14. Cecilia Rouse & Claudia Goldin, 2000. "Orchestrating Impartiality: The Impact of "Blind" Auditions on Female Musicians," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 715-741, September.
    15. Altonji, Joseph G. & Blank, Rebecca M., 1999. "Race and gender in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 48, pages 3143-3259 Elsevier.
    16. Erica L. Groshen, 1991. "The Structure of the Female/Male Wage Differential: Is It Who You Are, What You Do, or Where You Work?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 26(3), pages 457-472.
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    Cited by:

    1. Marta Silva & Luis Filipe Martins & Helena Lopes, 2015. "Asymmetric labour market reforms and wage growth with fixed-term contracts: does learning about match quality matter?," Working Papers Series 2 15-04, ISCTE-IUL, Business Research Unit (BRU-IUL).
    2. Elise Coudin & Sophie Maillard & Maxime To, 2018. "Family, firms and the gender wage gap in France," IFS Working Papers W18/01, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
    3. Card, David & Cardoso, Ana Rute & Kline, Patrick, 2013. "Bargaining and the Gender Wage Gap: A Direct Assessment," IZA Discussion Papers 7592, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    gender wage gap; high-dimensional fixed effects; segregation;

    JEL classification:

    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • 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
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing

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