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Discriminate me - if you can! The disappearance of the gender pay gap among public-contest selected employees

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  • Castagnetti, Carolina
  • Rosti, Luisa
  • Töpfer, Marina

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effect of public-contest recruitment on earnings for men and women using Italian microdata over a time period of ten years. We find that the gender pay gap vanishes and even reverses among the young, when employees are selected through public contests. The results suggest that selection mechanisms such as public contests may offer a way for merit-based and gender-fair wage setting. However, since public contests and the public sector are highly correlated, we analyze the gender pay gap taking the interconnection between the public and private sector as well as the open contest issue into account. By decomposing our results by sector we find that public contests represent a necessary but not sufficient condition for merit-based and gender-fair recruitment. Similarly, the institutional environment of the public sector is a necessary but not sufficient condition for making public contests merit-based and gender-fair screening devices. These two factors taken together, cause the disappearance of the gender pay gap.

Suggested Citation

  • Castagnetti, Carolina & Rosti, Luisa & Töpfer, Marina, 2018. "Discriminate me - if you can! The disappearance of the gender pay gap among public-contest selected employees," Discussion Papers 103, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Chair of Labour and Regional Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:faulre:103
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    2. Maria Elena Filippin, 2019. "Gender pay gap: a route from the North to the South of Italy," DEM Working Papers Series 176, University of Pavia, Department of Economics and Management.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Gender Pay Gap; Public-Contest Recruitment; Double Sample Selection;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
    • J13 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Fertility; Family Planning; Child Care; Children; Youth
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials

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