The Difference In The Wage Gap Between Men And Women In The United States

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The difference in the wage gap between men and women in the United States

The difference in the wage gap between men and women in the United States


The wage gap is a statistical indicator often used as an index of the status of women's earnings relative to men's. It is also used to compare the earnings of other races and ethnicities to those of white males, a group generally not subject to race- or sex-based discrimination. The wage gap is expressed as a percentage (e.g., in 2006, women earned 76.6% as much as men) and is calculated by dividing the median annual earnings for women by the median annual earnings for men.

The Purpose of the Research

The paper discusses that the long-standing differences in the average pay of men and women in the labor market are the result of many forces, including differences in the characteristics (such as average labour market experience) that men and women bring to their jobs, differences in the characteristics of the jobs in which men and women work, and differential and discriminatory treatment of women by employers and co-workers. All of these factors interact in complex ways. Hence it is difficult to determine precisely how much of the difference in female/male pay is due to discrimination and how much is due to differential choices and preferences by female workers. For example, if women have less experience than men, they may choose occupations where extensive experience is less necessary. If women consistently choose different occupations than men, stereotypes about women's abilities may be reinforced and discriminatory behaviour by employers may be perpetuated. If employers make it difficult for women to enter certain occupations, women's incentives to invest in training for those occupations may be reduced.

The Relevance/Importance of Your Research to HRM

HR policies says that a decade ago, a woman's role in the corporate sector was assumed to be merely secretarial in nature. But even today, the change is barely marginal. The new economy sectors such as Information Technology that supposedly encourage a greater role for women in high-paying jobs, are in fact hiring women primarily for back-office functions such as HR and BPO, while the purely technical, engineering or marketing and management jobs still largely go to the men. The 2009 WEF survey also supports this argument when it says that even among the best employers in India, women employees hold barely 10% of all senior management positions - in two-thirds of the companies covered under the survey. Nearly 40% of the surveyed companies had a women workforce of less than 10%. At the same time, there is practically no culture among the Indian companies to monitor gender-based wage gaps, with only 4% of the surveyed companies having some sort of a mechanism for it. Despite its admirable march towards economic liberalisation and reforms, India still needs to go a long way in terms of integrating its women workforce equally with the country's economic ...
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