Bryan Caplan  

Controlling the Gender Gap

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Andrew Gelman links to a tantalizing summary of Warren Farrell's Why Men Earn More. As best as I can tell, Farrell's got 25 new control variables to add to the standard wage regressions. He...

claims to have identified twenty-five tradeoffs involving job vs. lifestyle choices, all of which men tend to resolve in favor of higher pay, while women tend to seek better quality of life.

Here are some the factors discussed in the article. Men more readily accept jobs with longer hours, and Farrell reports that people who work 44 hours per work earn twice as much as people who work 34 hours per week. Similarly, he finds that men are more willing to relocate or travel, to work in higher risk environments, and to enter technical fields where jobs may involve less personal interaction. Each of these choices is associated with higher pay.

But wait, there's more:

Farrell intends to provide some positive news for women. He claims that in settings where women and men match on his 25 variables, the women actually earn more than men. He also identifies a number of specific fields where women do better. One of these is statistics(!), where he reports that women enjoy a 35 percent advantage in earnings.

If these findings replicate for academia, I'll take them straight to Alex Tabarrok.



COMMENTS (1 to date)
rakehell writes:

Farrell's book is great. If you read the Chronicle of Higher Ed, you really see the great challenges facing female PhDs who are trying to find a mate and start a family as well as finish their degrees, land jobs, or get tenure. It's an enormous crunch time for their late 20s, early thirties. It's not surprising at all if many women give up on academia or don't bother in the first place.

Since comments are closed on the post you link to, I really have to address something you said there:

"Ask yourself: Why don't department chairs fight to replace senile tenured faculty with bright, eager graduate student instructors?"

That's exactly what they have been doing for years, especially at larger, more prestigious institutions, both public and private.

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