Research Seminar

Globalization and the Glass Ceiling – Ina Charlotte Jäkel

27 Jun 2023


Ina Charlotte Jäkel (Aarhus University)


To date, women are severely under-represented in managerial positions. I use detailed linked employer-employee data from Denmark to uncover whether and how the gender gap for promotions into managerial positions (the “glass ceiling”) is affected by firm internationalization. Conditional on observable firm and worker characteristics, women are significantly less likely to be promoted than men, but this difference is attenuated at more export-oriented firms. However, this finding is partly driven by the differential sorting of workers into firms. Specifically, when controlling for worker or firm-worker fixed effects and restricting the sample to individuals who stay at the same firm, the gender promotion gap increases in firm exports. The destination characteristics of exporting firms do not matter for the gender promotion gap. Instead, similar patterns are found for domestic sales (and other measures of firm size), suggesting that firm internationalization affects the “glass ceiling” through its effect on firm scale. Taken together, results reveal that larger and/or more export-oriented firms succeed in increasing their gender diversity in management by hiring the most promotable female workers, but – holding the quality of the firm-worker match fixed – women in fact tend to benefit significantly less from increases in firm performance. These findings can be rationalized within the literature on gender differences in bargaining. 


Lecture Hall (A-032)