Abstract

In this study, we explore a new approach for analyzing changes in the gender pay gap that uses direct measures of job tasks and gives a comprehensive characterization of how work for men and women has changed in recent decades. Using data from West Germany, we find that women have witnessed relative increases in nonroutine analytic and interactive tasks. The most notable difference between the genders is, however, the pronounced relative decline in routine task inputs among women, driven, at least in part, by technological change. These changes explain a substantial fraction of the closing of the gender wage gap.

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