Opt-Out Debunked

Claudia Goldin, in an academic paper and now a NYT oped, neatly demolishes the anecdotal suggestions that highly educated American women are today "opting out" of the labour force.

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2 Responses to Opt-Out Debunked

  1. TB says:

    Am I missing something here? She initially refers to the decisions women made in the 1980s and early 1990s. Then with more recent, though less complete, data she says that not much has changed. But she doesn’t say when the most recent data is up to. I’m guessing it wouldn’t be 2005 data, and maybe not even 2004 data. Furthermore, in the abstract of her paper, she says, “Women who graduated college in the early 1980s did not “opt-out,”but recent cohorts are too young to evaluate.”

    My understanding is that these anecdotal suggestions of women ‘opting out’ are a very recent phenomena, so how exactly does her research neatly demolish these suggestions?

  2. Andrew Leigh says:

    TB, my understanding is that some of the opt-out arguments encompassed earlier cohorts. Perhaps it would’ve been better to say “to the extent the data allow, she demolishes the theory”. If those who believe it’s occurring are happy to now admit they have no evidence for the theory, I’m happy.

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