Press release: 11.485-045/17

International Women's Day 2017: Gender Pay Gap remains high at 21.7%

Vienna, 2017-03-03 – Women have successfully caught up in education and employment in the past decades. In 2014, the percentage of women with higher education (academy or university degree) was slightly higher (17.3%) than that of men (15.1%). The employment rate of women aged 15 to 64 years rose from 61.1% (2005) to 67.1% (2015).

Yet, the increase in female employment is mostly due to a rise in part-time work. In 2015, 47.4% of employed women worked part-time (2005: 39.5%). Part-time work plays an important role especially for women with children: In 2015, 74.5% of women aged between 25 und 49 years who have children under 15 years of age worked part-time, whereas only 6.6% of men with children worked in a part-time job.

Regarding the income situation of women and men, Austria is still among the countries with the highest gender-related wage differentials. In 2015, the average gross hourly earnings of women were by 21.7% lower than those of men (EU-28: 16.3%).

An analysis of various factors influencing the gender pay gap shows that less than half of the gender pay gap can be explained by differences in observed characteristics. Based on the data for the year 2014, the gender pay gap drops from 22.2% to 13.6% if the indicator is adjusted by characteristics such as economic sector, occupation, education, age, length of service, full- and part-time, type of employment contract, region or size of the enterprise.

Thus, only 8.6 percentage points of the gender pay gap can be explained by the observed characteristics. Most of the explained part can be attributed to the sectoral and occupational segregation of the labour market. Other important factors affecting the gender pay gap are the length of service in the enterprise and full-time and part-time work.

For more detailed information please refer to the German version.