DP4303 Gender Segregation in Employment Contracts

Author(s): Barbara Petrongolo
Publication Date: March 2004
Keyword(s): gender segregation, part-time work, temporary work
JEL(s): J22, J28, J71
Programme Areas: Labour Economics
Link to this Page: www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=4303

This Paper presents evidence on gender segregation in employment contracts in 15 EU countries, using micro data from the ECHPS. Women are over-represented in part-time jobs in all countries considered, but while in northern Europe such allocation roughly reflects women’s preferences and their need to combine work with childcare, in southern Europe part-time jobs are often involuntary and provide significantly lower job satisfaction than full-time ones. Women are also over-represented in fixed-term contracts in southern Europe, and again this job allocation cannot be explained by preferences or productivity differentials between the two genders. There is thus a largely unexplained residual in the gender job allocation, which may be consistent with some degree of discrimination in a few of the labour markets considered, especially in southern Europe.