Gender equality in the work place

Mary Ann Dimand amaebi at iwon.com
Wed Aug 30 18:05:04 EDT 2000


Jacob Profitt wrote:

> Studies that actually compare men to women in similar
> positions come closer to 98c to the $--which is a margin of
> error if anything.

I would love to see citations for these studies, please. The definition of
similarity of position is always highly sensitive, since remarkably few jobs
seem to be identical. This has been a problem not only for researchers on
income issues, but for policy enforcement in places like Canada, where there
used, at any rate, to be legislation concerning income adjustment for
disequities.

One of the notable things about employment in many countries, including the
United States, is that jobs are not evenly distributed by worker sex, and
even that some industries (childcare being an example) are predominantly
female. This suggests the possibility of income disequity occurring by which
jobs a class can get. For this reason, it may be useful to look at jobs
without identical titles or even in identical sectors.

Similarly, there are grave difficulties for the researcher interested in
comparing the competence of individuals. There is no ideal index of
competence. One index used is education, and countries with statistical
bureaus often publish median income records by educational attainment, and
broken up by sex and "race".

I was never a labour economist-- I was an international economist, and I
never enjoyed doing empirical economics. Hence I have some familiarity only
with US labor statistics. The Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor
Statistics publish quite extensive data on their webpages, and also useful
research papers.

If I may, I will suggest looking at
http://www.census.gov/prod/99pubs/p60-206.pdf , a research paper which
indicates median earnings by education and sex for the U.S. in 1998, and the
standard deviation within each class. Standard deviations are a statistical
measure useful in determing whether a difference might be viewed as
indicative of a substantial distinction between the classes (statistically
significant). I need to go to the PO pretty fast now, so I won't go through
the bother of reproducing the data. Especially as I'm giving a big wallopful
below.

The table below is for 1991-1998, and shows median incomes in current and
1998-dollar dollars for American men and women of varying educational
levels, in the labor force. Thus it permits comparison across gender by a
measure of quality or qualification, and cross-time comparison of trends. To
be in the labor force under current U.S. definitions is to be employed full-
or part-time or to be actively seeking work. I include so many years to show
that this is not a one-year anomaly. I spent some time making this tolerable
to look at in my word processor (Word), but there was no nice way to make
the table narrower to accommodate the many with narrower email windows. May
I suggest either looking at the original website,
http://www.census.gov/hhes/income/histinc/p16.html
or moving this text to a word processor to clean it up?

Table P-16. Educational Attainment--People 25 Years Old and Over by Median
Income and Sex:
1991 to 1998 (People as of March of the following year. Income in current
and 1998 CPI-U
ajdusted dollars) SEE TABLE P-17 FOR MEDIAN INCOME BEFORE 1991 BASED ON THE
OLD EDUCATIONAL ATTAINMENT QUESTIONS.
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Male Female
------------------------------------------------------
Educational 	Number 	Median income 	Number 	Median income
attainment   	  with 		------------------    	with 		------------------
and year     	income 	Current 	1998 	income 	Current 	1998
(thous.) 	dollars 		dollars (thous.) 	dollars 		dollars
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
TOTAL
1998 		80,869 	$30,654 	$30,654 84,819 	$16,258 	$16,258
1997 		80,263 	  28,919 	  29,369 83,821 	  15,573 	  15,816
1996 		79,423 	  27,248 	  28,307 83,056 	  14,682 	  15,253
1995 	25/ 	78,264 	  26,346 	  28,178 82,457 	  13,821 	  14,782
1994 	24/ 	77,546 	  25,465 	  28,008 81,829 	  12,766 	  14,041
1993 	23/ 	76,419 	  24,605 	  27,755 80,898 	  12,234 	  13,800
1992 	22/ 	75,872 	  23,894 	  27,760 79,854 	  11,922 	  13,851
1991 		75,137 	  23,686 	  28,347 79,383 	  11,580 	  13,859

Less than 9th grade
1998 		5,641 		$12,571 	$12,571 5,419 	$7,914 	$7,914
1997 		5,839 		  12,157 	  12,346 5,647 	  7,505 	  7,622
1996 		6,139 		  12,174 	  12,647 5,775 	  7,276 	  7,559
1995 	25/ 	6,277 		  11,723 	  12,538 6,020 	  7,096 	  7,590
1994 	24/ 	6,507 		  11,324 	  12,455 6,183 	  6,865 	  7,551
1993 	23/ 	6,734 		  10,895 	  12,290 6,423 	  6,480 	  7,310
1992 	22/ 	7,000 		  10,374 	  12,052 6,921 	  6,337 	  7,362
1991 		7,143 		  10,319 	  12,349 7,065 	  6,268 	  7,501

9th to 12th grade (no diploma)
1998 		7,366 		$17,462 	$17,462 7,559 	$9,582 	$9,582
1997 		7,601 		  16,818 	  17,080 7,661 	  8,861 	  8,999
1996 		7,671 		  16,058 	  16,682 7,929 	  8,544 	  8,876
1995 	25/ 	7,490 		  15,791 	  16,889 8,122 	  8,057 	  8,617
1994 	24/ 	7,286 		  14,584 	  16,040 7,943 	  7,618 	  8,379
1993 	23/ 	7,377 		  14,550 	  16,413 8,152 	  7,187 	  8,107
1992 	22/ 	7,524 		  14,218 	  16,518 8,248 	  7,293 	  8,473
1991 		7,759 		  14,736 	  17,636 8,561 	  7,055 	  8,443

High School Graduate (includes equivalency)
1998 		25,636 	$26,542 	$26,542 29,330 	$13,786 	$13,786
1997 		25,777 	  25,453 	  25,849 29,332 	  13,407 	  13,616
1996 		25,510 	  24,814 	  25,779 29,212 	  12,702 	  13,196
1995 	25/ 	24,909 	  23,365 	  24,990 28,785 	  12,046 	  12,884
1994 	24/ 	24,704 	  22,387 	  24,623 29,110 	  11,390 	  12,527
1993 	23/ 	24,682 	  21,782 	  24,571 29,171 	  11,089 	  12,509
1992 	22/ 	25,143 	  21,645 	  25,147 29,596 	  10,901 	  12,665
1991 		25,297 	  21,546 	  25,786 30,149 	  10,818 	  12,947

Some College, No Degree
1998 		13,935 	$31,627 	$31,627 15,173 	$18,445 	$18,445
1997 		13,892 	  30,536 	  31,012 14,677 	  17,153 	  17,420
1996 		13,756 	  29,160 	30,294 14,528 	  16,255 	  16,887
1995 	25/ 	13,715 	  28,004 	  29,952 14,619 	  15,552 	  16,634
1994 	24/ 	13,573 	  26,768 	  29,441 14,911 	  14,585 	  16,042
1993 	23/ 	13,247 	  26,323 	  29,693 14,390 	  14,489 	  16,344
1992 	22/ 	12,728 	  26,318 	  30,576 13,615 	  14,401 	  16,731
1991 		12,366 	  26,591 	  31,823 13,013 	  13,963 	  16,710

Associate Degree
1998 		5,766 		$35,962 	$35,962 6,931 	$21,290 	$21,290
1997 		5,591 		  32,930 	  33,443 6,914 	  21,073 	  21,401
1996 		5,210 		  33,065 	  34,351 6,839 	  20,460 	  21,255
1995 	25/ 	5,230 		  31,027 	  33,185 6,642 	  19,450 	  20,803
1994 	24/ 	5,046 		  30,643 	  33,703 6,573 	  17,954 	  19,747
1993 	23/ 	4,901 		  29,736 	  33,543 6,282 	  18,346 	  20,695
1992 	22/ 	4,540 		  28,791 	  33,449 5,539 	  17,331 	  20,135
1991 		4,083 		  29,358 	  35,135 5,236 	  17,364 	  20,781

Bachelor's Degree or More
1998 		22,525 	$50,272 	$50,272 20,409 	$30,692 	$30,692
1997 		21,563 	  47,126 	  47,860 19,590 	  29,781 	  30,245
1996 		21,136 	  44,161 	  45,878 18,775 	  27,556 	  28,627
1995 	25/ 	20,644 	  43,322 	  46,335 18,269 	  26,843 	  28,710
1994 	24/ 	20,429 	 42,027 	  46,224 17,109 	  26,237 	  28,857
1993 	23/ 	19,479 	 41,649 	  46,981 16,480 	  25,246 	  28,478
1992 	22/ 	18,937 	 40,557 	  47,119 15,933 	  25,093 	  29,153
1991 		18,490 	 39,803 	  47,635 15,359 	  23,627 	  28,276

--Bachelor's Degree
1998 		14,614 	$45,749 	$45,749 14,218 	$27,415 	$27,415
1997 		13,900 	  41,949 	  42,602 13,787 	  26,401 	  26,812
1996 		13,510 	  39,624 	  41,165 13,247 	  25,192 	  26,171
1995 	25/ 	13,065 	  39,040 	  41,755 12,875 	  24,065 	  25,739
1994 	24/ 	12,997 	  38,701 	  42,566 11,773 	  23,405 	  25,742
1993 	23/ 	12,360 	  37,474 	  42,272 11,447 	  22,452 	  25,326
1992 	22/ 	11,938 	  36,745 	  42,690 11,133 	  22,383 	  26,004
1991 		11,657 	  36,067 	  43,164 10,721 	  20,967 	  25,093

--Master's Degree
1998 		4,772 		$55,784 	$55,784 4,837 	$36,888 	$36,888
1997 		4,583 		  52,530 	  53,348 4,488 	  35,882 	  36,441
1996 		4,709 		  50,003 	  51,947 4,285 	  33,302 	  34,597
1995 	25/ 	4,774 		  49,076 	  52,489 4,205 	  33,509 	  35,840
1994 	24/ 	4,558 		  46,635 	  51,292 4,166 	  32,069 	  35,272
1993 	23/ 	4,320 		  45,597 	  51,435 4,003 	  31,389 	  35,408
1992 	22/ 	4,308 		  44,293 	  51,459 3,873 	  30,169 	  35,050
1991 		4,356 	  	  43,125 	  51,611 3,745 	  29,747 	  35,600

--Professional Degree
1998 		1,695 		$76,362 	$76,362 788 		$43,490 	$43,490
1997 		1,741 		  72,274 	  73,400 807 		  45,199 	  45,903
1996 		1,702 		  71,869 	  74,663 715 		  42,059 	  43,694
1995 	25/ 	1,657 		  66,257 	  70,865 732 		  38,588 	  41,272
1994 	24/ 	1,691 		  61,739 	  67,905 709 	 	  35,806 	  39,382
1993 	23/ 	1,650 		  69,678 	  78,599 583 		  32,742 	  36,934
1992 	22/ 	1,639	 	  68,429 	  79,501 569 		  36,640 	  42,568
1991 		1,547 		  63,741 	  76,283 556 		  34,064 	  40,767

--Doctorate Degree
1998 		1,443 		$65,319 	$65,319 567 		$46,275 	$46,275
1997 		1,338 		  68,643 	  69,712 508 		  46,545 	  47,270
1996 		1,215 		  62,255 	  64,675 527 		  42,431 	  44,081
1995 	25/ 	1,149 		  57,356 	  61,345 457 		  39,821 	  42,591
1994 	24/ 	1,183 		  57,478 	  63,218 462 		  40,793 	  44,867
1993 	23/ 	1,149 		  55,751 	  62,889 447 		  42,737 	  48,209
1992 	22/ 	1,053 		  51,681 	  60,043 358 		  39,322 	  45,684
1991 		929 		  51,845 	  62,046 337 		  37,242 	  44,570
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
NOTE: Before 1991, "high school, 4 years" included those with less than 1
year of college;
beginning in 1991, people with less than 1 year of college are included in
the "Some college, no
degree" category. The category "College, 1 to 3 years" used before 1991 is a
combination of the
new categories "Some college, no degree" and "Associate degree". See
separate page for
"Footnotes". See separate page for "Suggested Citations".
SOURCE: March Current Population Survey
PREPARED BY: Income Statistics Branch/HHES Division
U.S. Bureau of the Census
U.S. Department of Commerce
Washington, D.C. 20233-8500 (301) 457-3242


If I may, I will also suggest that Barbara Bergmann's In Defense of
Affirmative Action as a source of nifty industry-level and firm-level data
on employment and remuneration.


> Is there gender inequality in individual instances?  Sure.  But
> on aggregate, it's a battle that has been won.  Let's move the
> battle back down to individual instances where it belongs.

Every employment decision is a decision about an individual. There may be a
number of reasons for systematic differences across observable demographic
classes-- incompetence (as has often been claimed about women and people of
colour but which it is no longer very fashionable to claim), choice (which
requires more data on individual preferences than I've ever seen brought to
the issue, and worthwhile data on preferences is notoriously difficult to
obtain), bias, and probably others. It is no simple thing to work out how
much of each factor operates nationwide or in a given sector, and so of
course the results of different analysts vary. They vary based on data
selection, on statistical model, and most of all, on the politics of the
researcher, which influence the first two.

But I think hard data is worth citing, if the topic is to be discussed.

Mary Ann


.............................................................
voted #1 search engine! http://www.iwon.com why wouldn't you? 
.............................................................

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