ASSORTATIVE MATING OR GLASS CEILING: UNDER-REPRESENTATION OF FEMALE WORKERS AMONG TOP EARNERS

Accounting for Worker Well-Being

ISBN: 978-0-76231-110-1, eISBN: 978-1-84950-273-3

ISSN: 0147-9121

Publication date: 14 July 2004

Abstract

Three empirical regularities characterize markets for married workers: (1) productivity and leadership potential are predicted by intelligence; (2) assortative mating based on intelligence characterizes marriages; and (3) labor force participation declines with spouse income more rapidly for married women than for married men. Taken together these characteristics imply that labor force participation will decline for women relative to their husbands as intelligence rises. These three observations suggest a nondiscriminatory explanation for the alleged under-representation of females among corporate leaders. They imply that the women who might be predicted to win the tournament for these positions often do not enter this competition. Instead they choose employment in full time household production. Both the three regularities and the implication concerning labor force participation are empirically examined. The findings of these tests are supportive on all counts.

Citation

Elizabeth Becker and Cotton M. Lindsay (2004). 'ASSORTATIVE MATING OR GLASS CEILING: UNDER-REPRESENTATION OF FEMALE WORKERS AMONG TOP EARNERS', in Solomon W. Polachek (ed.) Accounting for Worker Well-Being (Research in Labor Economics, Volume 23). Emerald Group Publishing Limited, pp. 235-267

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DOI

: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0147-9121(04)23007-2

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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