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59 Hastings L.J. 1359 (2007-2008)
Cognitive Bias and the Motherhood Penalty

handle is hein.journals/hastlj59 and id is 1399 raw text is: Cognitive Bias and the Motherhood Penalty
When women become mothers, their labor market prospects tend to
suffer. A number of studies have documented that mothers experience
worse labor market outcomes than women without children.' Perhaps
most well established is the motherhood wage penalty: mothers earn
approximately 5 % less per child than other workers, over and above any
gender wage penalty. The penalty persists even after statistically
controlling for education, work experience, race, whether an individual
works full- or part-time, and a broad range of other human capital and
occupational variables.' The motherhood wage penalty is not limited to
the United States, but has been documented in at least a dozen other
industrialized nations.' The penalty also has not shown signs of decline
over time.'
* Stephen Benard is an assistant professor of sociology at Indiana University.
** In Paik is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at Cornell University.
Shelley J. Correll is an associate professor of sociology at Stanford University. The Authors
thank Joan Williams and the editors of the Hastings Law Journal & the Center for WorkLife Law
Symposium, Family Responsibilities Discrimination: Lessons for the Use of Stereotyping Evidence and
Implicit Bias in Employment Cases, held February 9, 2oo8, for helpful feedback and suggestions.
I. See, e.g., Michelle Budig & Paula England, The Wage Penalty for Motherhood, 66 AM. Soc.
REV. 204, 204 (2001). For related work, see generally Deborah J. Anderson et al., The Motherhood
Wage Penalty Revisited: Experience, Heterogeneity, Work Effort, and Work-Schedule Flexibility, 56
INDUS. & LAB. REL. REV. 273 (2003); Shelly Lundberg & Elaina Rose, Parenthood and the Earnings of
Married Men and Women, 7 LAB. ECON. 689 (2000); and Jane Waldfogel, The Effect of Children on
Women's Wages, 62 AM. Soc. REV. 209 (1997). For other examples of studies of the motherhood wage
penalty see Jane Waldfogel, Understanding the 'Family Gap' in Pay for Women with Children, 12 J.
ECON. PERSP. 137 (1998) [hereinafter Waldfogel, Understanding].
2. Budig & England, supra note I.
3. Id.
4. Waldfogel, Understanding, supra note I, at 14I; see also SUSAN HARKNESS & JANE WALDFOGEL,
Michelle Budig, The Cross-National Effects of Work-Family Policies on the Wage Penalty for
Motherhood 8 (Oct. 15, 2oo6) (unpublished grant proposal submitted to the National Science
Foundation) (on file with The Hastings Law Journal) (discussing the motherhood penalty cross-
nationally). A motherhood penalty has been documented in countries including Australia, Austria,


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