Gender and occupational wage gaps in Romania: from planned equality to market inequality?
Published: August 2014
Keywords: Romania, female- and male-dominated occupations, gender wage gap, occupational wage gap.
JEL classification: J24; J31; J71; J78; P26; P27.
In Romania, the communist regime promoted an official policy of gender equality for more than 40 years, providing equal access to education and employment, and restricting pay differentiation based on gender. After its fall in December 1989, the promotion of equal opportunities and treatment for women and men did not constitute a priority for any of the governments of the 1990s. This paper analyzes both gender and occupational wage gaps before and during the first years of transition to a market economy, and finds that the communist institutions did succeed in eliminating the gender wage differences in female- and male-dominated occupations, but not in gender-integrated occupations. During both regimes, wage differences were in general much higher among workers of the same gender working in different occupations than between women and men working in the same occupational group, and women experienced a larger variation of occupational wage differentials than men.