Despite numerous improvements in women’s employment outcomes, there are still many gender gaps that need to be addressed. On average, across OECD countries, the proportion of women in paid work is high (62%). However, women in OECD countries earn 18% less than men, only about one-third of managerial posts are held by a woman, many more women work in part-time jobs than men (25% and 6% respectively). These gender differences are even wider with the presence of children since women are more likely to adjust their employment practices upon the arrival of a child much more than men.
A more detailed overview of gender differences can be found in the Gender Brief.
More research on Gender issues
Gender issues figure prominently in the work programme of the OECD Social Policy Division. While most of the social statistics are disaggregated as much as possible by gender on a routine basis, there are also a number of projects that directly address policy concerns related to women and their role in the economy and society as well as to the distribution of work and family responsibilities between men and women more broadly (Doing Better for Families; Babies and Bosses: Reconciling Work and Family Life; Doing Better for Children and the OECD Family database), and these issues will be expanded upon in ongoing work on Doing Better for Families, which will contain a chapter on gender equity in labour market outcomes. The forthcoming issue of Society at a Glance will include a special feature on unpaid work, while Women and Pensions will look at how labour market differences in terms of earnings, working hours, time taken off to care for children, affect the pension entitlement of women, but will also consider the effects of changes over time in life expectancy, fertility and marital status. The latter 3 publications are scheduled for release in the first half of 2011.
Here is a set of examples of policy reforms that we advocate on Work/family balance, gender equity and fertility issues