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Contribution Details

Type Working Paper
Scope Discipline-based scholarship
Title The effect of peer gender on major choice
Organization Unit
  • Ulf Zölitz
  • Jan Feld
  • English
Institution University of Zurich
Series Name Working paper series / Department of Economics
Number 270
ISSN 1664-7041
Number of Pages 39
Date 2018
Abstract Text This paper investigates how the peer gender composition in university affects students' major choices and labor market outcomes. Women who are randomly assigned to more female peers become less likely to choose male-dominated majors, they end up in jobs where they work fewer hours and their wage grows at a slower rate. Men become more likely to choose male-dominated majors after having had more female peers, although their labor market outcomes are not affected. Our results suggest that the increasing female university enrolment over recent decades has paradoxically contributed to the occupational segregation among university graduates that persists in today’s labor market.
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Keywords Peer effects, major choice, gender composition, Peer-Group, Studienfachwahl, Berufswahl, Geschlechtsunterschied
Additional Information Revised Version