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The role of gender in employment polarization


Cerina, Fabio; Moro, Alessio; Petersen Rendall, Michelle (2017). The role of gender in employment polarization. Working paper series / Department of Economics 250, University of Zurich.

Abstract

We document that U.S. employment polarization in the 1980-2008 period is largely generated by women. Female employment shares increase both at the bottom and at the top of the skill distribution, generating the typical U-shape polarization graph, while male employment shares decrease in a more similar fashion along the whole skill distribution. We show that a canonical model of skill-biased technological change augmented with a gender dimension, an endogenous market/home labor choice and a multi-sector environment accounts well for gender and overall employment polarization. The model also accounts for the absence of employment polarization during the 1960- 1980 period and broadly reproduces the different evolution of employment shares across decades during the 1980-2008 period. The faster growth of skill-biased technological change since the 1980s accounts for most of the employment polarization generated by the model.

Abstract

We document that U.S. employment polarization in the 1980-2008 period is largely generated by women. Female employment shares increase both at the bottom and at the top of the skill distribution, generating the typical U-shape polarization graph, while male employment shares decrease in a more similar fashion along the whole skill distribution. We show that a canonical model of skill-biased technological change augmented with a gender dimension, an endogenous market/home labor choice and a multi-sector environment accounts well for gender and overall employment polarization. The model also accounts for the absence of employment polarization during the 1960- 1980 period and broadly reproduces the different evolution of employment shares across decades during the 1980-2008 period. The faster growth of skill-biased technological change since the 1980s accounts for most of the employment polarization generated by the model.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Working Paper Series > Department of Economics
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
JEL Classification:E20, E21, J16
Uncontrolled Keywords:Job polarization, gender, skill-biased technological change, home production
Language:English
Date:March 2017
Deposited On:11 Apr 2017 13:29
Last Modified:25 Apr 2017 13:28
Series Name:Working paper series / Department of Economics
Number of Pages:41
ISSN:1664-7041
Official URL:http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/wp/econwp250.pdf
Related URLs:http://www.econ.uzh.ch/static/workingpapers.php

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