NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

From Mill Town to Board Room: The Rise of Women's Paid Labor

Dora L. Costa

NBER Working Paper No. 7608
Issued in March 2000
NBER Program(s):   DAE   LS

In the twenty-first century many of the professional and high ranking managerial workers in the United States and in other OECD countries will be women. This change in women's social and economic status represents a dramatic break with the past, but one that can only be understood by looking to the past. The rise of the career woman would not have been possible without the entry of previous generations of women into the labor market. This entry was determined both by contemporaneous demand factors and by the characteristics, expectations, and social norms regarding work and family of different cohorts of women. History suggests that change in women's labor force experiences may be slow because it must await the entry of new cohorts of women (and also of men)into the labor market.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w7608

Published: Costa, Dora L. "From Mill Town To Board Room: The Rise Of Women's Paid Labor," Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2000, v14(4,Fall), 101-122. citation courtesy of

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