Do Marriage and Children Deprive Women’s Hiring Opportunities - A Field Experiment

41 Pages Posted: 9 Mar 2021

See all articles by Myongjin Kim

Myongjin Kim

University of Oklahoma

Jiawei Lyu

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Daniel Nedelescu

University of Oklahoma - Department of Economics

Leilei Shen

Kansas State University - Department of Economics

Date Written: November 28, 2020

Abstract

Using a correspondence study in the accountant job market in China, this paper studies whether getting married or being a parent harms women during the recruitment process. We find that getting married decreases the probability to receive a call back for women by 3 percentage points on average. This represents a decrease in callback rates for women by 30%. On the other hand, getting married increases the probability of receiving callbacks for men on average. However, the negative effect on married women is driven by the discrimination against married women with no children and married women with one child whose age is closer to the perceived optimal age to have children. For married women with two children, the effect completely cancels out the negative effect of married with no children. Our results suggest that employers discriminate against married women mostly due to the imminent costs associated with maternity leave and not due to the perceived reduction in productivity for married women who need to care for children.

Keywords: Field experiment, Employment Opportunity, Women, Children.

JEL Classification: C9, J13, J71

Suggested Citation

Kim, Myongjin and Lyu, Jiawei and Nedelescu, Daniel and Shen, Leilei, Do Marriage and Children Deprive Women’s Hiring Opportunities - A Field Experiment (November 28, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3766405 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3766405

Myongjin Kim

University of Oklahoma ( email )

307 W Brooks
Norman, OK 73019
United States

Jiawei Lyu

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Daniel Nedelescu (Contact Author)

University of Oklahoma - Department of Economics ( email )

308 Cate Center Drive
Room 323
Norman, OK 73019-2103
United States

Leilei Shen

Kansas State University - Department of Economics ( email )

Manhattan, KS 66506-4001
United States

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