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Lack of high-quality part-time jobs holds back equal pay

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Improved access to flexible and part-time work would help reduce the pay gap suffered by women who work part time, according to new research by Professor Alan Manning and Barbara Petronogolo of the London School of Economics and Political Science, published today (Wednesday 24 November) by the Department of Trade and Industry. 

The new research shows that British women working part-time earn an average 22 per cent less than those working full-time because of the lack of high-quality part-time jobs available. 

The Part-time Pay Penalty suggests that some women are forced to make a shift to lower paid jobs to work part-time, and as a result cannot make the most of their skills and experience. 

Professor Alan Manning said: 'Women working part-time are not using all the skills they have. That means they're not earning to their full potential. More part-time and flexible opportunities would be an important step to help reduce the part-time pay penalty these women suffer.

The UK has the worst part-time pay penalty anywhere in Europe according to Professor Manning, and one of the worst records in allowing women to shift from full-time to part-time work without a demotion of job change. 

  • To read a PDF of the report, click here


The Part-time Pay Penalty is available from the Department of Trade and Industry press office. Department of Trade and Industry, 7th Floor, 1 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0ET. Tel: 020 7215 5000. 


Professor Alan Manning and Barbara Petrongolo are based at the Centre for Economic Performance at LSE.

Press cuttings

Financial Times (25 Nov 04)
Call to narrow part-time pay gap
The UK has one of the worst records in Europe for forcing women to downgrade their jobs when they switch to part-time work, a report has found. Alan Manning, LSE, one of the report's authors, quoted. Also mentioned in the Scotsman and Employers' News.

The Scotsman (25 Nov 04) 

Employers' News (24 Nov 04) 
http://www.employersnews.co.uk/news/n174.html (Link - no longer available)

Guardian (24 Nov 04)
Women pay for going part-time
Research, by Alan Manning and Barbara Petronogolo of LSE, found the "pay penalty" for working part-time in Britain was the biggest in Europe. 

24 November 2004