Breakfast Session: Gender and Careers
Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM (PDT)
- Chair: Marianne Bertrand, University of Chicago
Temporary Work Contracts and Female Labor Market Outcomes
AbstractIn the mid-1990s, the major firms in the Japanese airline industry changed personnel policy so that all newly-hired flight attendants were employed on temporary employment contracts for their first three years of employment. The reverse policy change occurred in the mid-2010s: the major firms transitioned back to hiring their flight attendants on permanent contracts. These industry-level changes in hiring practices provide ``natural experiments" which can be used to study whether starting out on a temporary contract matters for long-run career and family outcomes. Our research design uses unique personnel records from one of Japan's major airlines as well as government census and survey data to compare outcomes for cohorts of flight attendants hired just before to those hired just after these changes in industry policy. The first key outcome we study is job continuity: We find that workers starting on temporary contracts were less likely to remain with the firm over time; those who remain have significant delays in their job ladder. We next turn to family formation, finding that remainers have significantly delayed childbirth. These results do not appear to be caused by selection on observables, but are suggestive of causal effects of starting work on a temporary contract.
Working Hours and the Gender gap in Career Success
AbstractGuided by the three theoretical perspectives (human capital, signalling, and tournament), we provide new evidence and insights on gender differences and similarities in the interplay between working hours and career success or the hours-career nexus. We do so by combining Danish registry data covering the population of Danish workers with the Danish Labor Force Survey which includes detailed and reliable data on working hours. While female managers’ workweek is shorter than their male counterparts’ workweek, our logit estimates show consistently that after controlling for a variety of observable characteristics, there is a comparable positive link of the length of the workweek to the odds of subsequent top management appointments between the sexes. We also explore whether long working hours help careers elsewhere, and find no compelling evidence for such an effect of working long hours on the odds of future top management appointments elsewhere, regardless of gender. When we go beyond the length of the workweek and delve into types of working hours, some intriguing gender differences are discovered. First, conditional on the length of the workweek, working evening or night is found to be positively associated with the odds of top management appointments for women but not for men. Second, for men, given the length of the workweek, being the longest working hour person among peers is found to be positively associated with the odds of subsequent top management appointments. However, no such association is found for their female counterparts. Interpretations are provided for the findings, using the three theoretical perspectives.
Marrying for Love or Mobility? Dual-Career Couples and High-Risk Job Opportunities
AbstractMarriage has been proposed to facilitate entrepreneurship, yet it has been theoretically and empirically unexamined to date. Drawing on fundamental principles from portfolio theory, we propose that members of dual-career couples may be a key source of labor for the entrepreneurial sector, including start-ups companies. We test our predictions using data from a sample of over 2,000 managerial and professional employees who work at corporate headquarters of large firms. We find that dual-career couples have a greater willingness to pursue employment at start-up companies relative to those in one-career households. This difference is primarily driven by men in dual-career couples in which the partner's career is the higher priority. The paper provides a distinct perspective to the literature on dual-career couples, showing that this arrangement can facilitate mobility and labor market opportunity, which is in contrast to the typical characterization of dual-career status as a hindrance to an employee's labor market success due to restrictions on mobility. Reasons for the gender difference in the willingness to pursue high-risk job opportunities are examined.
- M5 - Personnel Economics