Home / Industry / Gig economy’s flexible hours unlikely to narrow gender pay gap

New Delhi: Male Uber drivers earn roughly 7% more per hour than women on average, shows a new National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) working paper authored by Cody Cook, a researcher with Stanford University, and others. The paper, based on earnings data of more than a million Uber drivers in the US between 2015 and 2017, attributes half of the gender pay gap to men driving faster than women. Also, men tended to drive in more lucrative locations and did not shy away from plying in areas riddled with crime or drinking establishments.

Men also drove more each week, getting more experience—hence more money by the hour—compared with women. The study suggests that even as the “gig economy" grows and brings more flexibility in employment, gender-based differences in preferences can perpetuate an earnings gap even in the absence of discrimination.

Also read: The Gender Earnings Gap in The Gig Economy: Evidence From Over A Million Rideshare Drivers (bit.ly/2MzHmMd)

Women frequently underestimate the true costs of raising children and having a career at the same time, according to a recent study by Ilyana Kuziemko, a researcher at Princeton University, and others. The study uses the British Household Panel Survey and US Census Bureau panel data on young women to find that the financial and logistical challenges of motherhood come as a shock to many new mothers. On average, women, especially the more educated ones, say parenthood is harder than they expected and tend to develop a negative view towards employment after they have children, the report finds. One explanation is that the costs of motherhood have risen in a manner today’s cohort of mothers was likely unable to predict, the report says. Such costs include a decline in employment after childbirth and stunted wage growth.

Also read: The Mommy Effect: Do Women Anticipate The Employment Effects Of Motherhood? (bit.ly/2NcOsaC)

Firms with stable, shared leadership accumulate more resources and better talent, which eventually enables them to gain dominance in an industry, shows a study by Rajshree Agarwal and Serguey Braguinsky from the University of Maryland and Atsushi Ohyama of Hitotsubashi University. Studying the processes of firm growth in the evolution of the Japanese cotton spinning industry from 1883-1914, the authors establish that a focus on value creation, in conjunction with talent recruitment and promotion, enabled some firms to achieve stable shared leadership despite discord-induced departures, engage in long-term expansion and emerge as “centres of gravity" for output and talent in the industry.

Gender-based differences in preferences may perpetuate an earnings gap even in the absence of discrimination-

Also read: Centers Of Gravity: The Effect Of Stable Shared Leadership In Top Management Teams On Firm Growth And Industry Evolution (bit.ly/2NcPEe6)

Every rupee spent on tuberculosis screening and cure can generate benefits worth 179, resulting in lives being saved, fewer people being disabled and quicker treatment initiation, shows a study in Rajasthan by Nimalan Arinaminpathy of Imperial College, London. India’s recent National Strategic Plan for TB elimination, launched in 2017, is based on two interventions—private sector engagement and case-finding. The study shows that an intervention that succeeds in engaging half the private healthcare providers in Rajasthan will avert 3,322 deaths, or 11.5% of deaths on average, and 10,678 TB cases, or 11.9% of such cases, per year. According to the study, the intervention would cost on average 15.2 crore per year between now and 2050, resulting in an overall benefit-to-cost ratio of 179.4.

Also read: Modelling the potential impact of TB interventions in Rajasthan (bit.ly/2KiWdh9)

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