Professor Francine Blau sheds light on the gender pay gap during the second day of LACEA-LAMES 2021
During her speech, Francine Blau, professor of economics at Cornell University, explained and discussed the reasons for the gender pay gap at one of the eight keynote lectures organized for the LACEA-LAMES 2021.
In her presentation, Understanding the Gender Pay Gap, she discussed the different explanatory frameworks for the pay gap. Thus, Professor Blau refuted the theories that explain the pay gap with the difference in human capital and argued that discrimination is a relevant factor in several cases. However, the latter is not the only variable that must be considered to understand the pay gap between men and women: aspects such as non-cognitive skills and the traditional assignment of tasks are also important.
Professor Blau also addressed policies that could reduce the gender pay gap. Along these lines, she highlighted policies that keep in mind the family, such as paternity leave, the determination of a legal minimum wage, and anti-discrimination laws. Likewise, the professor highlighted the role unions, as long as they have considerable coverage, can play in reducing the pay gap between men and women.
Laura Ripani, the lead economist of Labor Markets and Social Security Unit of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), introduced Blau’s lecture and opened the Q&A session. The questions asked by the participants addressed issues as diverse as gender stereotypes and cases that, despite being discriminatory, do not correspond to explicit discrimination. The conference closed with Blau’s responses which in turn opened the subject to new possibilities and perspectives.