What Drives the Gender Gap? An Analysis Using Sexual Orientation

CERGE-EI Working Paper Series No. 505

44 Pages Posted: 20 Feb 2014 Last revised: 22 Jul 2016

See all articles by Josef Montag

Josef Montag

Charles University, Faculty of Law - Department of Economics

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 1, 2014

Abstract

Gender differences in productivity, if any, that are unobserved to researchers may produce an omitted variable bias in gender gap studies. Finding a subpopulation with less acute differences in unobserved characteristics would allow this concern to be addressed. This paper argues that gays and lesbians are one such interesting group — for the intra-household division of labor and its effects on market productivity cannot be sex-determined in this subpopulation. Indeed, there are substantial intra-household variations in labor market outcomes and other characteristics; the patterns and magnitudes are similar to different-sex households. Simultaneously, the gender wage gap between gays and lesbians is much smaller than in the heterosexual population; in specifications that control for geographic location it is near zero. These findings suggest that the intra-household division of labor is an important factor driving gender differences in labor market outcomes. Such an interpretation is consistent with recent studies that control for productivity.

Keywords: Gender gap, sexual division of labor, discrimination, specialization

JEL Classification: J16, D10, J22, J24, J70

Suggested Citation

Montag, Josef, What Drives the Gender Gap? An Analysis Using Sexual Orientation (February 1, 2014). CERGE-EI Working Paper Series No. 505. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2398154 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2398154

Josef Montag (Contact Author)

Charles University, Faculty of Law - Department of Economics ( email )

nam. Curieovych 7
Prague 1, 11640
Czech Republic

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