The Economic Case for More Gender Equality in Estonia

Gender equality is not just about fairness and equity; it is also about economic empowerment and economic growth. Estonia has made great strides towards gender equality. Girls today outperform boys in educational attainment, but they are less likely than boys to study mathematics or information and communication technology. The gender employment gap is small, but Estonian women are still less likely to make it to the top, and career breaks around childbirth contribute to the declining but still considerable gender wage gap. This review considers the gender gaps in labour market outcomes and explores the gap in pay between men and women with equivalent skills within and across firms. It considers family support policies for households with young children, women’s bargaining position in firms, initiatives to combat gender-based discrimination as well as changing gender norms in education. It then explores the potential economic gains of greater gender equality under different scenarios. Indeed, a greater sharing of paid and unpaid work between men and women will lead to economic gains, but it requires changing norms, mindsets, and attitudes. Such changes take time, but policy has a role to play in raising public awareness of gender biases in society and promoting change.

Published on December 06, 2022

In series:Gender Equality at Workview more titles


Executive summary
Estonia: Well-positioned for further progress with gender equality
The labour market situation for men and women in Estonia
The role of firms in the gender pay gap in Estonia
A summary view of support for families with very young children in Estonia
Combating gender-based discrimination and enhancing women’s bargaining power within firms in Estonia
Chasing out traditional gender norms, in educational settings and beyond in Estonia
Gender equality pays in Estonia
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