ERIC Number: ED229881
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Feb
Reference Count: 0
Social Mobility and Public Sector Employment.
Rumberger, Russell W.
Although the government's role as provider of social services and guardian of individual rights has had little effect on the economic position of women and minorities, as an employer it has greatly improved their welfare in terms of job opportunities and earnings. U.S. census data from 1960 to 1980 show that the public sector currently employs one-sixth of the labor force and has generated a quarter of all new jobs in those years. The types and number of jobs government creates have benefited women and minorities by providing relatively more high-level job opportunities than has the private sector. As a consequence, the public sector employs from one-third to two-thirds of minority and female college graduates. While earnings discrimination exists in both the public and private sectors, the earnings gap is generally lower in the public sector, where, during the 1960s and early 1970s, minorities and women earned more than their counterparts in the private sector. This advantage has now largely disappeared because of inflation and the government's huge fiscal deficit. Fiscal problems are causing reductions in the work force and may threaten future employment opportunities for these groups. This may severely hinder their social mobility. Four tables provide data on employment growth, government employees, and earnings. (PB)
Descriptors: College Graduates, Employed Women, Employment Opportunities, Employment Patterns, Employment Statistics, Equal Opportunities (Jobs), Government Employees, Income, Labor Market, Minority Groups, Social Mobility, Tables (Data)
Publications, Institute for Research on Educational Finance and Governance, School of Education, CERAS Building, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 ($2.00).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Inst. for Research on Educational Finance and Governance.
Identifiers: Private Sector; Public Sector
Note: An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Political Science Association (Denver, CO, September 2-5, 1982).