CInSt Research Seminar "Is Women's Work Devalued? Evidence from Unique Personnel Data of a Russian Firm During Transition (1990 - 2006)": Hartmut Lehmann (University of Bologna, HSE University, IZA)
Hartmut Lehmann will present joint research with Thomas Dohmen (University of Bonn and IZA) and Karolina Tanska-Goraus (University of Warsaw) "Is Women's Work Devalued? Evidence from Unique Personnel Data of a Russian Firm During Transition (1990 - 2006)" on November 21st.
While gender gaps in wages in most regions of the world were narrowing over time, they continue to persist in part due to how female’s work is valued. It is found that “traditionally female” occupations offer lower remunerations to its workers than male dominated occupations that require similar level of skill and education (Cohen and Huffman, 2003; Liner, 2016). Cohen and Huffman (2003) also find that higher levels of occupational segregation at the labor market level are associated with increased tendency to devalue women’s work.
Differences between occupations and industries in which men and women work account for more than half of the gender gap (Blau and Kahn, 2016). What is even more important, there is evidence that as occupations are becoming more feminized the pay is relatively declining (Levanon et al., 2009).
Gender earnings differentials may be related to the productivity differences and sorting of women and men into different firms (Kremer, 1993; Carrington and Troske, 1998). The analysis of the personnel data of one firm, which is performed in this paper, may shed light on the issue of within-firm gender wage gaps. While the external validity of estimates obtained for one particular firm is limited, an analysis of personnel data allows to control for individual and job-related characteristics in much more precise way and investigate whether gender gap still exists when one focuses on such a homogeneous group of workers (Kunze, 2008). Longitudinal character of the data might allow also to establish causality in the relation between occupations' proportion of women and its wage level (devaluation vs. queuing view).
Few studies provide the analysis of adjusted gender wage gaps with firm level data or matched employee-employer data (e.g. Bayard et al., 2003; Heinze, 2010 for employee- employer data; Barnet-Verzat and Wolff, 2008, for the personnel data). We use a data set that contains information on all employees working for a Russian firm over the period 1990-2006. Thus, this unique dataset allows to analyse the evolution of the gender wage gap in an internal labour market already for the early transition years, and to study the career history of its workers. We are able to track changes between main occupational types, e.g. between production workers and technicians, as well as between smaller occupational levels within the group of production workers.
In the case of the analysed firm the raw gender wage gap started to grow in transition and reached a peak of 45% of women’s average wage in 1998. By the end of the analysed period, the gender wage differential falls to around 20%. The analysis of monthly wage data indicates that, especially in the years of big gender wage differentials, bonus payments that increase wages paid in December were much bigger for women, thus decreasing the gender wage gap averaged over the year. The observed gender wage gap cannot be explained by demographic characteristics, like age, education, marital status, or having children. However, when job related characteristics are included in the decompositions, the adjusted wage gap becomes much smaller than the raw wage gap suggesting that women are more often employed in lower-wage occupations.
Date: November 21st, 2019, 6:10-7:30 pm.
Location: K416, 11 Pokrovsky Boulevard, Moscow.
Working language: English.
All welcome. If you don't have an HSE ID, please register before 2:00 PM on November 21st: cinst.hse.ru/register.