Sibling Gender Composition and Women's Wages Research Highlighted in The Independent

By: Sarah Schupp, 
Fri, 10/13/2017

Graduate Student Angela Cools' and Professor Eleonora Patacchini's recent working paper examines the impact of sibling gender composition on women’s adult earnings. .

The Independent recently highlighted their work in a piece detailing gender pay disparities in the UK and an upcoming push for companies to publish gender pay gap figures on their websites.

Using data collected from US-based Add Health, Cools and Patachhini "found that having a brother lowered earnings by approximately 10 percent for a woman in her late 20s or early 30s. If no women had brothers, the overall gender pay gap would likely be around 5 percent smaller, their research claims.

The gap can largely be attributed to the fact that – generally – women with brothers tend to focus more on family and tend to prioritise being in a committed relationship over those who only have a sister or have no siblings at all. Those with brothers, the researchers say, also tend to display a greater intention to have children."  Cools and Patacchini also "found no evidence that differences in parental investment, cognitive abilities, parental expectations, or personality traits drive the earnings power."

To read the full Independent article, click here.

Eleonora Patacchini is a Professor in the Cornell's Department of Economics and is currently teaching ECON 4903 Quantitative Analysis of Economic Data and ECON 7260 Econometrics of Network Analysis.  She is also a Research Fellow or Associate at the Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance, Kiel Institute for the World Economy, IZA Institute for the Study of Labor, Centre for Labor and Economic Growth, and Luiss Lab of European Economics. Her recent research focuses on the empirical analysis of behavioral models of strategic interactions for decision making. Patacchini's work has been profiled in Bloomberg, PBS Newshour, The Independent, The Economist, and The New York Times. Click here to see Patacchini's Cornell profile.

Angela Cools is a graduate student in the Cornell Economics Ph.D. Program.  Her current research interests include labor economics and public policy. To learn more about Angela Cools, click here.

Portrait of Eleonora Patacchini