Just Like a Woman? New Comparative Evidence on the Gender Income Gap Across Eastern Europe and Central Asia

50 Pages Posted: 30 May 2018

See all articles by Niels-Hugo Blunch

Niels-Hugo Blunch

Washington and Lee University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Abstract

I examine the incidence and determinants of the gender income gap in Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Serbia, Tajikistan, and Ukraine using recent household data based on an identical survey instrument across countries. Four main results are established, using a range of estimators, including OLS, interval regression, and quantile regression: (1) the presence of a substantively large gender income gap (favoring males) in all six countries; (2) some evidence of a gender-related glass ceiling in some of these countries; (3) some evidence that endowments diminish the income gaps, while the returns to characteristics increase the gaps; and (4) while observed individual characteristics explain part of the gaps, a substantial part of the income gap is left unexplained.In sum, these results are consistent with the presence of income discrimination towards females but at the same time also point towards the importance of continued attention towards institutions and economic policy for decreasing the gender income gap in these former formally gender neutral economies—notably through attention towards the maternity and paternity leave system, as well as public provision of child care.

Keywords: gender, income gap, Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, detailed decomposition, maternity/paternity leave policies, Eastern Europe and Central Asia

JEL Classification: J16, J31, J7

Suggested Citation

Blunch, Niels-Hugo, Just Like a Woman? New Comparative Evidence on the Gender Income Gap Across Eastern Europe and Central Asia. IZA Discussion Paper No. 11530, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3185222

Niels-Hugo Blunch (Contact Author)

Washington and Lee University ( email )

Department of Economics
Lexington, VA 24450
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.wlu.edu/williams-school/economics/faculty-and-staff/profile?ID=x258

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

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