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Berufliche Geschlechtersegregation und ihre Folge für die (Re-)Produktion von Geschlechterungleichheiten im deutschen Arbeitsmarkt


In this project, the importance of occupations that are particularly formative for the employment trajectory in Germany for the (re)production of gender inequalities in the labor market was investigated. From previous research, it was already known that typical and male occupations are associated with unequal labor market opportunities. Building on this research, we analyzed the inequality-relevant consequences of occupational gender segregation, both at the occupational and individual level.



First, we examined at the occupational level whether and how women's and men's occupations differ apart from their gender composition, for example, in terms of their wage levels or working time arrangements. Based on this, we examined how these occupational characteristics affect individual employment trajectories and whether they thereby contribute to the (re)production of gender inequalities.



For the empirical analysis of both questions, an occupational panel was generated on the basis of the sample of the Integrated Labor Market Biographies (SIAB) and the Microcensus, which made it possible to trace longer-term trends in occupational gender segregation and their interaction with other occupational characteristics. The results of these analyses were used to identify inequality-relevant indicators of occupational structure. These were then fed into NEPS data for Starting Cohort 6 to examine how occupational characteristics translate into gender inequalities in non-monetary labor market outcomes and how they affect the gender wage gap.

1. Project phase

In the first project phase, we described long-term trends of occupational sex segregation in Germany and analysed how the share of women in an occupation is causally related with other occupational characteristics, such as wage levels, shares of part-time work, and qualification structure. The findings of these analyses were then used to investigate how various occupational characteristics generate individual gender inequalities in career progressions. Thus, the first project phase focused on the importance of occupational sex segregation for non-monetary aspects of labour market inequalities between women and men.

2. Project phase

Occupational gender segregation, however, is also central in explaining the gender wage gap in Germany. Yet, it was unclear why occupations dominated by women pay less: Is the mere proportion of women responsible for the gender wage gap, or are other occupational characteristics linked to female-typical occupations the decisive mechanisms? If this is true, how has the influence of different occupational characteristics on the gender wage gap changed throughout the last 30 years in Germany?

To answer these questions, we explored in the second phase of our project how the gendered structure of occupations affects the wages of women and men and how this relationship changed since the mid-1970s in Germany. The analyses were based on a unique new wage data ont the individual level: NEPS Starting Cohort 6 was linked with register data of the Institute for Employment Research (IAB). Thus they additionally contain rich longitudinal wage and firm information for respondents. For modelling and decomposing the gender wage gap, we merged these individual data with occupational panel data generated in the first project phase and enriched these data with occupational activity profiles.


Project profile



Project partners
Leibniz-Universität Hannover



Kleinert, C., Leuze, K., Bächmann, A.-C., Gatermann, D., Hägglund, A. E., & Rompczyk, K. (2023). Occupational sex segregation and its consequences for the (re-)production of gender inequalities in the German labour market. In S. Weinert, G. Blossfeld, & H.-P. Blossfeld (Eds.), Education, Competence Development and Career Trajectories. Analysing Data of the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS) (pp. 295–317). Springer.


Bächmann, A.-C. (2022). Are female-dominated occupations a secure option? Occupational gender segregation, accompanied occupational characteristics and the risk of becoming unemployed. European Sociological Review. jcac068.
Bächmann, A.-C., Gatermann, D., Kleinert, C., & Leuze, K. (2022). Why do some occupations offer more part-time work than others? Reciprocal dynamics in occupational gender segregation and occupational part-time work in West Germany, 1976-2010. Social Science Research. Article 102685.


Bächmann, A.-C., & Gatermann, D. (2017). The duration of family-related employment interruptions: The role of occupational characteristics. Journal for Labour Market Research, 50(1), 143-160.
Hägglund, A. E., & Bächmann, A.-C. (2017). Fast lane or down the drain? Does the occupation held prior to unemployment shape the transition back to work? Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, 49, 32-46.


Hausmann, A.-C., Kleinert, C., & Leuze, K. (2015). "Entwertung von Frauenberufen oder Entwertung von Frauen im Beruf?" Eine Längsschnittanalyse zum Zusammenhang von beruflicher Geschlechtersegregation. Kölner Zeitschrift für Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie, 67(2), 217-242.