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Gender gaps in unemployment rates in OECD countries

Azmat, Ghazala, Guell, Maia and Manning, Alan (2004) Gender gaps in unemployment rates in OECD countries. CEPDP, 607. Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK. ISBN 0753017083

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Abstract

There is an enormous literature on gender gaps in pay and labour market participation but virtually no literature on gender gaps in unemployment rates. Although there are some countries in which there is essentially no gender gap in unemployment, there are others in which the female unemployment rate is substantially above the male. Although it is easy to give plausible reasons for why more women than men may decide not to want work, it is not so obvious why, once they have decided they want a job, women in some countries are less likely to be in employment than men. This is the subject of this paper. We show that, in countries where there is a large gender gap in unemployment rates, there is a gender gap in both flows from employment into unemployment and from unemployment into employment. We investigate different hypotheses about the sources of these gaps. Most hypotheses find little support in the data and the gender gap in unemployment rates (like the gender gap in pay) remains largely unexplained. But it does seem to correlate with attitudes on whether men are more deserving of work than women so that discrimination against women may explain part of the gender gap in unemployment rates in the Mediterranean countries.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk
Additional Information: © 2004 the authors
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Journal of Economic Literature Classification System: J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J1 - Demographic Economics > J16 - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
J - Labor and Demographic Economics > J6 - Mobility, Unemployment, and Vacancies > J64 - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Rights: http://www.lse.ac.uk/library/usingTheLibrary/academicSupport/OA/depositYourResearch.aspx
Identification Number: 607
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2008 09:26
URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/19995/

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