Gender and Employment in the COVID-19 Recession: Evidence on “She-Cessions”
25 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2022
Date Written: March 2021
Early evidence on the pandemic’s effects pointed to women’s employment falling disproportionately, leading observers to call a “she-cession.” This paper documents the extent and persistence of this phenomenon in a quarterly sample of 38 advanced and emerging market economies. We show that there is a large degree of heterogeneity across countries, with over half to two-thirds exhibiting larger declines in women’s than men’s employment rates. These gender differences in COVID-19’s effects are typically short-lived, lasting only a quarter or two on average. We also show that she-cessions are strongly related to COVID-19’s impacts on gender shares in employment within sectors.
Keywords: COVID-19 recession, Employment, Gender, sectoral employment, labor force participation contribution, gender gap change, labor market change, sectoral workforce composition, Employment rate, Women, Gender inequality, Labor markets, Global
JEL Classification: E24, E32, J16, J60, J20, I12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation