Family-Friendly Occupations and Wage Differentials

Katie Genadek, University of Minnesota
Kristine West, University of Minnesota

This project investigates family-friendly workdays using time diary data. Specifically, we (1) identify occupations that allow parents to spend more time on childcare and (2) investigate whether this time use benefit comes at the cost of lower wages. We use data a pooled cross section from the American Time Use Survey (2003-2009) and Tobit regression analysis to control for observable differences between workers; omitted variable bias is addressed. We find that jobs in education are significantly more “family-friendly” than other jobs but that service jobs, such as those in retail and food services, are less conducive to spending time on childcare. Interestingly, preliminary work does not show that workers with children must trade off wages for the ability to spend more time with their children. In fact, workers in occupations that are “family-friendly” appear to have slightly higher wages than observationally similar peers.

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Presented in Poster Session 7