Essays on the Importance of Gender, Sectoral Assignment and Post-Migration Education for Earnings Dynamics

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Laing, Michelle Gyamsewa




This thesis is comprised of three essays that examine factors influencing labour market experiences and the impact of diversity for firm performance. Chapter 1 explores whether corporate boardroom gender diversity deters opportunistic behaviour in financial reporting in periods of uncertainty. Earnings management arises because the accrual accounting method leads to earnings potentially being presented in a way which gives an excessively positive view of a firm's financial position. Using a firm fixed effects model, I find that having two female directors is associated with lower discretionary accruals and, thus, greater corporate income. Yet, gender diversity does not always deter opportunistic behaviour in financial reporting during periods of uncertainty when CEO / CFO wealth is tied to the value of a firm's shares. Chapter 2 contributes to the literature by using data from the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics (SLID) to explore public-private sector wage differentials in Canada in the period from 1993 to 2010. I find strong evidence for the existence of a public sector wage premium and show that controlling for union coverage or firm size can reduce the estimated public sector wage premium. Additionally, the public sector pays some workers who are likely to experience discrimination based on their race or sex relatively more than they would have earned if they had worked in the private sector. Chapter 3 uses data from the Canadian Employer-Employee Dynamics Database (CEEDD) to analyze the earnings returns immigrants obtain from investments in post-secondary education (PSE) after their arrival in Canada. PSE enrollment is found to increase the annual earnings of both men and women. Earnings returns are larger for immigrants admitted in the Skilled Worker category relative to Family Class immigrants and Refugees and increase with the level of education at landing. Immigrants from non-traditional source countries generally have larger earnings returns than immigrants from English language source countries. Further, earnings returns are higher when immigrants build human capital through both PSE and work experience; returns from PSE rise with time since the most recent study period; and earnings growth from PSE is not biased by out-migration.


Economics - Labor




Carleton University

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Theses and Dissertations

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