Category Archives: Working Women

OAH Hosts National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites

OAH Hosts National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites
Source: National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites, Organization of American Historians

The OAH serves as an online host to the National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites (NCWHS) web site. NCWHS supports and promotes the preservation and interpretation of sites and locales that bear witness to women’s participation in American life. The Collaborative makes women’s contributions to history visible so that all women’s experiences and potential are fully valued.

Women Working, 1870-1930

Source: Harvard University Library, Open Collections Program

Women Working, 1800 – 1930 focuses on women’s role in the United States economy and provides access to digitized historical, manuscript, and image resources selected from Harvard University’s library and museum collections. The collection features approximately 500,000 digitized pages and images including:
• 7,500 pages of manuscripts
• 3,500 books and pamphlets
• 1,200 photographs

The Unpaid Care Work-Paid Work Connection

Source: Rania Antonopoulos, Levy Economics Institute of Bard College, Working Paper no. 541, July 2008

From the summary:
In order to provide a coherent perspective of gender differences in the world of work, the many intersections of paid and unpaid work must be brought to light. It is well documented that gender-based wage differentials and occupational segregation continue to characterize the division of labor among men and women in paid work; yet unpaid work in social reproduction, subsistence production, family businesses, and the community is often ignored. When it is taken into account, it is usually done in a very limited manner, equating unpaid work with the traditional roles women play in raising children and performing maintenance chores. Beyond the obvious gender inequalities characterizing the latter, unpaid work constitutes an integral part of any functioning economy, and as such is linked to economic growth, government policy, migration, and many development issues. This paper concludes that the “world of work” cannot be treated in complete disregard to unpaid forms of labor, and gender equality must be understood through the lens of the paid-unpaid work continuum.

The Impact of the Current Economic Downturn on Women

Source: Heidi Hartmann, Institute for Women’s Policy Research, IWPR #B260, Testimony presented to the Joint Economic Committee, May 2008

First, I want to stress that the context of women’s employment has changed over time. If women ever worked for “pin money” they certainly no longer do. Women’s earnings are a large and critical share of the economic support of families in the United States today: Women’s earnings constitute 45 percent of all earnings that support families. The most typical family with children today is one in which both parents are working. That and the large number of families supported by working mothers alone mean that just about as many children have working mothers as have working fathers. Women’s earnings are especially important to the support of children who do not live with their fathers. Even though the typical woman who works full-time, year-round earns only about ¾ of what the typical man earns, more than 7 million families with children relied solely or mainly on the mother’s earnings in 2006.

New Report: Economic Status Of New York Women Has Declined

Source: Erica Williams, Institute for Women’s Policy Research in partnership with The New York Women’s Foundation, June 2008

From the press release:
Women in New York State fare worse economically than they did in 1989, according to The New York Women’s Foundation’s new report, The Economic Status of Women in New York State.

The report, researched and authored by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR), examines how women in New York State fare in two areas: employment and earnings and social and economic autonomy. While the report finds substantial potential for women’s economic progress, it also depicts a stark and alarming portrait of poverty in a wealthy society, particularly for women of color.

Improving Pay Equity Would Mean Great Gains for Women

Source: Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Press release, 2008

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research has found that improving pay equity between women and men would create substantial economic gains for women and their families. IWPR finds that in 2008 dollars the typical woman worker would gain $5,710–an economy-wide gain of a staggering $319 billion–if equal pay were the norm. Over a 35-year working life, the typical woman would gain $210,000.
See also:
Equal Pay for Working Families: National and State Data on the Pay Gap and its Costs, 1999

Gender in Job Negotiations: A Two-Level Game

Source: Hannah Riley Bowles, and Kathleen L. McGinn, Harvard Business School NOM Working Paper No. 08-095, May, 13 2008

From the abstract:
We propose a two-level-game perspective on gender in job negotiations. At Level 1, candidates negotiate with the employers. At Level 2, candidates negotiate with domestic partners. In order to illuminate the interplay between these two levels, we review literature from two separate bodies of literature. Research in psychology and organizational behavior on candidate-employer negotiations sheds light on the effects of gender on Level 1 negotiations. Research from economics and sociology on intra-household bargaining elucidates how negotiations over the allocation of domestic labor at Level 2 influence labor force participation at Level 1. In conclusion, we integrate practical implications from these two bodies of literature to propose a set of prescriptive suggestions for candidates to approach job negotiations as a two-level game and to minimize disadvantageous effects of gender on job negotiation outcomes.

Making the Grade on Women’s Health: A National and State-by-State Report Card 2007

Source: National Women’s Law Center, 2008

From the summary:
Making the Grade on Women’s Health: A National and State-by-State Report Card is the first-ever report card to assess the overall health of women at the national and state levels. The Report Card is designed to promote the health and well-being of women in the United States by providing the most comprehensive assessment to date of women’s health.
See also:
Key Findings

Immigrant Labor, Child-Care Services, and the Work-Fertility Trade-Off in the United States

Source: Delia Furtado, Heinrich Hock, IZA Discussion Paper No. 3506, May 2008

The negative correlation between female employment and fertility in industrialized nations has weakened since the 1960s, particularly in the United States. We suggest that the continuing influx of low-skilled immigrants has led to a substantial reduction in the trade-off between work and childrearing facing American women. The evidence we present indicates that low-skilled immigration has driven down wages in the US child-care sector. More affordable child-care has, in turn, increased the fertility of college graduate native females. Although childbearing is generally associated with temporary exit from the labor force, immigrant-led declines in the price of child-care has reduced the extent of role incompatibility between fertility and work.