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The Gender Wage Gap Among College Graduates in Italy

Daniela Piazzalunga

Italian Economic Journal: A Continuation of Rivista Italiana degli Economisti and Giornale degli Economisti, 2018, vol. 4, issue 1, 33-90

Abstract: Abstract The paper investigates the gender wage gap among recently graduates, controlling for job and academic variables and for the field of study, as women lag behind in highly remunerative majors. The raw gender differential in hourly wages is 5.6%. Although including academic variables and the field of study—on top of job-related variables—slightly reduces the unexplained gap, the latter still accounts for most of the total difference. Using quantile decomposition, the paper shows that the unexplained gap increases along the wage distribution, indicating a glass ceiling effect. Heterogeneities arise among fields of study: the largest total gap emerges in Law, Political-Social sciences, and Economics-Statistics. In most disciplines, there is a significant unexplained gap—from 3.3% (Medicine), to 8.7% (Law), up to 9.6% (Agriculture)—which constitutes the largest share of the difference, confirming that most of the wage gap remains unexplained also by major. Finally, I use geographical differences to explore the influence of institutional and macro-economic variables, as well as of attitudes towards gender norms. The results indicate that childcare and part-time employment availability are correlated with lower gender wage gaps, while traditional gender norms are associated with higher differentials.

Keywords: Gender wage gap; Oaxaca–Blinder decomposition; College graduates; Quantile decomposition; Field of study; Regional differences (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J16 J31 J71 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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