Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap

Steffen Andersen, Philippe d’Astous, Jimmy Martínez-Correa, Stephen H. Shore

Publikation: Working paperForskning

Resumé

University programs differ in their gender earnings gaps, that is, the difference between the subsequent earnings of the program’s male and female enrollees. A program could have a positive gender earnings gap because it attracts higher-ability men than women (a selection effect) or because it increases the earnings of male enrollees more than female enrollees (a causal effect). To understand the source of cross-program differences in gender earnings gaps, we estimate the returns for men and women entering programs with different gender earnings gaps. We exploit a discontinuity built into the Danish national university admissions system, which provides a quasi-random assignment of similar applicants to different programs. We compare students assigned across this discontinuity to programs with low- to high-earning enrollees and to programs with small to large gender earnings gaps. Enrolling in a program whose enrollees earn $1 more leads to a $0.28 increase in earnings. Enrolling in a program with a $1 larger gender earnings gap, holding average earnings constant, has no effect on male earnings but reduces female earnings by $0.42. This effect is small when women enter the labor market but increases over time. Our results show that programs that appear worse for women – in the sense of having large gender earnings gaps – are worse for women in that these programs
reduce female earnings more than programs with smaller gaps.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
Udgivelses stedAtlanta, GA
UdgiverCEAR, Georgia State University
Antal sider64
StatusUdgivet - 2020
NavnWorking paper / Center for Economic Analysis of Risk (CEAR)
Nummer2020/1

Citer dette

Andersen, S., d’Astous, P., Martínez-Correa, J., & Shore, S. H. (2020). Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap. Atlanta, GA: CEAR, Georgia State University. Working paper / Center for Economic Analysis of Risk (CEAR), Nr. 2020/1
Andersen, Steffen ; d’Astous, Philippe ; Martínez-Correa, Jimmy ; Shore, Stephen H. / Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap. Atlanta, GA : CEAR, Georgia State University, 2020. (Working paper / Center for Economic Analysis of Risk (CEAR); Nr. 2020/1).
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Andersen, S, d’Astous, P, Martínez-Correa, J & Shore, SH 2020 'Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap' CEAR, Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA.

Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap. / Andersen, Steffen; d’Astous, Philippe; Martínez-Correa, Jimmy; Shore, Stephen H.

Atlanta, GA : CEAR, Georgia State University, 2020.

Publikation: Working paperForskning

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AU - Shore, Stephen H.

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AB - University programs differ in their gender earnings gaps, that is, the difference between the subsequent earnings of the program’s male and female enrollees. A program could have a positive gender earnings gap because it attracts higher-ability men than women (a selection effect) or because it increases the earnings of male enrollees more than female enrollees (a causal effect). To understand the source of cross-program differences in gender earnings gaps, we estimate the returns for men and women entering programs with different gender earnings gaps. We exploit a discontinuity built into the Danish national university admissions system, which provides a quasi-random assignment of similar applicants to different programs. We compare students assigned across this discontinuity to programs with low- to high-earning enrollees and to programs with small to large gender earnings gaps. Enrolling in a program whose enrollees earn $1 more leads to a $0.28 increase in earnings. Enrolling in a program with a $1 larger gender earnings gap, holding average earnings constant, has no effect on male earnings but reduces female earnings by $0.42. This effect is small when women enter the labor market but increases over time. Our results show that programs that appear worse for women – in the sense of having large gender earnings gaps – are worse for women in that these programsreduce female earnings more than programs with smaller gaps.

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Andersen S, d’Astous P, Martínez-Correa J, Shore SH. Cross-program Differences in Returns to Education and the Gender Earnings Gap. Atlanta, GA: CEAR, Georgia State University. 2020.