Gender and Job Chains in Local Economic Development
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Over the last decade, the welfare evaluation of local economic development activities has become increasingly sophisticated. Projected or realized gains have been broken down by wage levels, household income levels, and race. However, relatively little attention has been paid to the distribution of gains by gender. In parallel, the gender literature has recognized the distribution of economic development activity by income group but not by vacancies. We present an evaluation approach, the job chains model, that combines the two. Occupations with a high proportion of women are identified and isolated at each wage level. We estimate the proportion of job-chain vacancies induced by new “female” jobs and their welfare impacts. We find that women are underrepresented in welfare gains associated with both male and female high wage jobs. The applicability of our approach for evaluating alternative industrial targets is demonstrated.