Workers in Jobs With a High Risk of Being Sexually Harassed Are Paid More

Joni Hersch, a professor of law and economics at Vanderbilt Law School, has conducted research calculating the economics aspects of sexual harassment risks by industry, age group, and gender.

Not surprisingly, her research found that women were six times more likely than men to sexually harassed at work. But her data also showed that companies pay workers for the likelihood of greater exposure to sexual harassment at work. Professor Hersch found that women in jobs with a moderate risk of sexual harassment are paid on average 25 cents more per hour than women in jobs where there tends to be no likelihood of sexual harassment. Men who are in jobs where they are more likely to be sexually harassed, are paid on average 50 cents more per hour.

Hersch states, “Sexual harassment in the workplace is so universally despised that people require some extra compensation for exposure to the risk of a sexually harassing environment.”

Professor Hersch is a graduate of the University of South Florida. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from Northwestern University. Prior to joining the faculty at Vanderbilt, she taught at Harvard Law School from 1999 to 2006 and previously taught economics at the University of Wyoming and the University or Oregon.

The research, published in the American Economic Review, can be accessed here.

Filed Under: Research/StudySexual Assault/Harassment


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