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Structural change in developing countries: has it decreased gender inequality?

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  • Michelle Rendall

Abstract

This paper examines the evolution of female labor market outcomes from 1987 to 2008 by assessing the role of changing labor demand requirements in four developing countries: Brazil, Mexico, India and Thailand. The results highlight the importance of structural change in reducing gender disparities by decreasing the labor demand for physical attributes. The results show that India, the country with the greatest physical labor requirements, exhibits the largest labor market gender inequality. In contrast, Brazil's labor requirements have followed a similar trend seen in the United States, reducing gender inequality in both wages and labor force participation.

Suggested Citation

  • Michelle Rendall, 2012. "Structural change in developing countries: has it decreased gender inequality?," ECON - Working Papers 077, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
  • Handle: RePEc:zur:econwp:077
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    File URL: http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/wp/econwp077.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marigee P. Bacolod & Bernardo S. Blum, 2010. "Two Sides of the Same Coin: U.S. "Residual" Inequality and the Gender Gap," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 45(1).
    2. Sandra E. Black & Alexandra Spitz-Oener, 2010. "Explaining Women's Success: Technological Change and the Skill Content of Women's Work," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 187-194, February.
    3. David H. Autor & Frank Levy & Richard J. Murnane, 2003. "The skill content of recent technological change: an empirical exploration," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
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    5. G. Reza Arabsheibani & Francisco Galrao Carneiro & Andrew Henley, 2003. "Gender wage differentials in Brazil : trends over a turbulent era," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3148, The World Bank.
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    7. Daron Acemoglu & David H. Autor & David Lyle, 2004. "Women, War, and Wages: The Effect of Female Labor Supply on the Wage Structure at Midcentury," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(3), pages 497-551, June.
    8. Michelle Petersen Rendall, 2010. "Brain versus brawn: the realization of women's comparative advantage," IEW - Working Papers 491, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich, revised Jun 2017.
    9. Mark M. Pitt & Mark Rosenzweig & Nazmul Hassan, 2010. "Human Capital Investment and the Gender Division of Labor," Working Papers 989, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    10. Todd Schoellman, 2010. "The Occupations and Human Capital of U.S. Immigrants," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, pages 1-34.
    11. Ingram, Beth F. & Neumann, George R., 2006. "The returns to skill," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 35-59, February.
    12. Michelle Rendall, . "Female Market Work, Tax Regimes, and the Rise of the Service Sector," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics.
    13. Klasen, Stephan & Pieters, Janneke, 2012. "Push or Pull? Drivers of Female Labor Force Participation during India's Economic Boom," IZA Discussion Papers 6395, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    14. Nakavachara, Voraprapa, 2010. "Superior female education: Explaining the gender earnings gap trend in Thailand," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, pages 198-218.
    15. L. Alan Winters & Shahid Yusuf, 2007. "Dancing with the Giants: China, India, and the Global Economy," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6632.
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    17. Menon, Nidhiya & Rodgers, Yana van der Meulen, 2009. "International Trade and the Gender Wage Gap: New Evidence from India's Manufacturing Sector," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 965-981, May.
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    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Structural change in developing countries: has it decreased gender inequality?
      by Maximo Rossi in Wikiprogress América Latina on 2012-06-04 19:01:00

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Ahmed, Salma & McGillivray, Mark, 2015. "Human Capital, Discrimination, and the Gender Wage Gap in Bangladesh," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 506-524.
    2. repec:spr:soinre:v:134:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11205-016-1461-8 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Romina Kazandjian & Lisa L Kolovich & Kalpana Kochhar & Monique Newiak, 2016. "Gender Equality and Economic Diversification," IMF Working Papers 16/140, International Monetary Fund.
    4. Joanna Tyrowicz & Magdalena Smyk, 2017. "Wage inequality and structural change," GRAPE Working Papers 8, GRAPE Group for Research in Applied Economics.
    5. Kucera, David & Tejani, Sheba, 2014. "Feminization, Defeminization, and Structural Change in Manufacturing," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 569-582.
    6. Grundmann, Rainer & Gries, Thomas, 2015. "Crucial for Modern Sector Development? The Role of Exports and Institutions in Developing Countries," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112962, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    7. Besamusca, Janna & Tijdens, Kea & Keune, Maarten & Steinmetz, Stephanie, 2015. "Working Women Worldwide. Age Effects in Female Labor Force Participation in 117 Countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 123-141.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Structural change; job tasks; female employment; wage gap; Latin America; Asia;

    JEL classification:

    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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