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At the feminist economics meeting

At the feminist economics meeting

While GRAPE has dealt with gender issues from its very beginnings, this year was the first participation of its members in the International Association for Feminist Economics conference. The meeting took place in Galway, Ireland, and it gathered participants from around the world. Karolina, Magdalena and Lucas presented their most recent research.

During her session, Karolina showed the results of our analysis of changes in the female participation rate in transition economies. The research began by noticing that in transition countries female participation rate dropped since 1990,while in advanced economies there was a process of gradual convergence. Using a large number of micro-level data, we demonstrate that many of the factors behind the increase in advanced economies, particularly changes in education and decisions to postpone marriage, had only a negligible impact on women in transition economies. By contrast, it seems like the boom in education coupled with increase of labour market frictions for those entering labor market was responsible for the fall. Yet, the paper is on a preliminary stage, and there are still many questions to answer.

Magdalena discussed the results of her research in entrepreneurship and the adjusted gender wage gaps. Her results suggested that differences in wages do affect women decision to create their own jobs. However, the effects are only visible for necessity driven entrepreneurs, as opposed to opportunity driven entrepreneurs. During the debate, several paths for future development were mentioned and we hope to build on the soon.

The paper presented by Lucas explores the relation between age and the adjusted gender wage gap. Using data from Germany, we were able to separate year-cohort-age effects and obtain reliable measures of changes in the adjusted component. We show that while the gap narrowed over time, patterns with respect to age remained constant, with older women faring worse relative to men. These results suggest that in order to reduced further the wage gap, policies should also tackle the difficulties faced by women after their reproductive age.

Next meeting of the association will be held in South Korea.