Prestige inequality : the effects of family status and occupational segregation.
Wage inequality has been extensively studied in the social sciences, but few researchers have studied prestige inequality. This paper looks not only at prestige and wage inequality between genders, but also within genders, specifically investigating the effects of family status and occupational segregation. Using both occupational prestige and log of income as dependent variables in a variety of regressions, educational attainment, family characteristics, as well as workplace characteristics emerge as important variables in predicting occupational prestige and income. The main finding of this study is that inequality of both wages and prestige is perpetuated not only by innate characteristics, such as gender, but also through socio-demographic characteristics, such as marital status, children, and educational attainment. An individual's career path also attributes to higher or lower prestige. The most logical explanation for this variance in prestige and income is that employers use stereotypes, assumptions, and expectations to guide their hiring practices.