A New Gender Contract

Gøsta Esping‐Andersen

in Why We Need a New Welfare State

Published in print August 2002 | ISBN: 9780199256433
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599170 | DOI:
A New Gender Contract

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This chapter addresses two closely woven issues: that of harmonizing (making compatible) the dual aims of careers and motherhood that most European women now pursue; and that of achieving full gender neutrality (equality) in the allocation of opportunities, life chances, and welfare outcomes. The main aspects addressed in investigating the multi‐dimensional compatibility problem are: the heterogeneity of women's preference sets (family centred, career centred, or dual role), public support for working mothers, the job supply, the role of wages, and motherhood. The main aspects addressed in investigating gender equality across the life course are: gender segregation in the labour markets, gender differences in pay, female life choices, and the extra costs and risks of employing women. It is argued that neither social nor labour‐market policy will solve these gender inequality issues, and the possibility of a domestic solution is discussed.

Keywords: careers; employment; equality; Europe; gender; gender segregation; inequality; labour market; labour‐market policy; life choice; motherhood; pay; social policy; wages; welfare state; women; working mothers

Chapter.  11120 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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