Back to Page Authors: Paul Reimers

Keywords: gender gaps, structural change, economic development, education

Abstract: In the developing world, men invest substantially more years in schooling than women. However, as economies develop women nearly catch-up to men in terms of schooling years. In this work, I assess in how far structural change, by affecting men's and women's hours in market production, can explain the fall in the male/female ratio in schooling years. To do so, I develop a multi-sector growth model with endogenous schooling choices. Men and women decide how much time to spend in non-market work and market work. In market sectors, human capital enhances technology and both genders' wages. I estimate the model so as to best replicate the male/female ratio in market hours that I observe from micro-data of 76 countries. Given that I match this ratio, I derive the model's implications for men's and women's schooling choices. The model predicts that structural change can account for about 73\% of the observed closing in the male/female ratio in schooling years.