From Motherhood Penalties to Fatherhood Premia: The New

MEMORANDUM No 5:2007 From Motherhood Penalties to Fatherhood Premia: The New Challenge for Family Policy By Trond Petersen, University of California, Berkeley and University of Oslo Andrew Penner, University of California, Berkeley Geir Høgsnes, University of Oslo

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The processes that occur in the family are today probably the largest obstacle to
continued progress in gender equality in the workplace. Gender differences in wages
between single men and women are consistently found to be considerably smaller
than among men and women who are married or have children. This study examines
how family processes affect gender differences on wages using longitudinal
matched employee-employer data from Norway, 1980-1997. We find that over this
period the large wage penalty initially associated with marriage and children for women
decreases substantially, so that by 1997 women who do the same work for the
same employer earn similar wages, regardless of marital status or motherhood. This
is not true among men, where the small wage premia for marriage and fatherhood
remain relatively constant across this period. Thus, while gender differences at the
beginning of this period were primarily due to women being penalized for marriage
and motherhood, by the end of this period, family processes create gender differences
in wages primarily through the premia for men. These results suggest that Norwegian
family policies have been largely successful at ameliorating the wage penalties
for women, so that the role of family on gender differences in wages is now primarily
due to the male premia. We explore how these processes play out in wage growth
and promotions, and conclude by discussing the policy implications of these findings
for Norway and the United States.Første avsnitt. Dette dokumentet kan redigeres med FCK.

By Matthew Whiting
Published Oct. 10, 2010 11:19 AM - Last modified Oct. 15, 2010 8:56 AM