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Economy - Essay Example

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Summary: Economics of Women, Men & Work The book titled ‘Economics of Women, Men and Work’ by Blau, Ferber and Winkler offers a qualitative and quantitative insight into the economics of Women, Gender and Work. The book contains comprehensive information and analysis on Gender and Employment and aims to understand the latest trends in the labor markets from several perspectives…
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Download file to see previous pages Thus, this chapter discusses both the supply-side and demand-side factors that lead to differences in occupations and earnings. The authors, based on statistical analysis, note here that occupational segregation has declined over the past 30-40 years as women increasingly aspire for better education and have become more competitive than before. They however warn that despite these latest trends, gender disparity continues to be noticeable among different occupations. For example, Women comprised over 95% of nurses and constituted over four-fifths of all schoolteachers during the mid-nineties. Men, on the other hand, were dominant in the manufacturing sector. Blau et al note that gender and wage differences have remained existent for long periods as both groups have restricted themselves to such specific professions. They further attribute gender differences as the primary reason for discrepancies in job hierarchies, promotions and pay and analyze these factors to highlight their individual and collective impact on the male and female workforce. Chapter 6: Differences in Occupations and Earnings: The Human Capital Model This chapter introduces the role of various factors like educational attainment, productivity and training in narrowing the gap in pay based on gender differences. The authors contend that rising educational qualifications among women has resulted in subtle cracks in the glass ceiling that is apparent in most corporate organizations, and explain it using the Human Capital Model. The authors study the relationship between labor longevity and investment in higher education and argue that women tend to invest in the latter as they see better prospects for staying within the workforce for longer durations. They further noted that women prefer on-the-job training citing better employment prospects and as a way to reduce any potential barriers to career advancement. These trends reflect on declining barriers to career opportunities besides throwing light on changing practices among educational institutions with regards to admission policies and inclusion of a higher percentage of women. The authors also cite several legislations such as the Title IX of 1972 as additional reasons for reduction in gender-based discrimination among educational establishments. For instance, the percentage of women in institutions of higher education has risen from a meager 7% during the 1960s to as much as 35-40% across all professional fields and courses of study. The authors also discuss in length about the ‘Index of Segregation’, which measures the extent of segregation on the basis of gender across several hundred occupations. Numerically, this index estimates the percentage of each sex who must change jobs in order for the professional distribution amongst the two groups to reach equilibrium. Over the years, the Index has reduced from a massive 67% (in terms of women) to nearly half by the turn of the century. Chapter 7: Differences in Occupations and Earnings: The Role of Labor Market Discrimination Through this chapter, the authors primary demonstrate that discrimination within the labor market does exist when two similar individuals with equal qualifications, experience and profiles are ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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