Explaining the Gender Wage Gap in Turkey Using the Wage Structure Survey

Arda Aktaş ve Gökçe Uysal

Gender discrimination in the labor market can take on many forms, the most prominent one being the gender gap in wages. The labor market in Turkey is not an exception. Even though the gender wage gap is 3 percent on average, a closer look reveals important differences along the wage distribution. There is virtually no gender gap at the lower end and men earn 6.47 percent more than women at the median. Surprisingly, women seem to earn 4.99 percent higher wages than men at the top of the wage distribution. Using the quantile regression method, we discuss how the labor market returns differ along the wage distribution. Secondly, we use the Machado-Mata decomposition method to reveal how much of the gender gap at each quantile can be explained by gender differences in characteristics versus gender differences in returns. We find that the gender gap actually widens when we control for basic characteristics such as age, education and tenure. In other words, controlling for gender differences in labor market characteristics reveals that there is gender discrimination in Turkey, as measured by the differences in returns.

pdf.  WorkingPaper#005