Women, Men, and Human Capital Development in the Public Sector
Return on Investments
By (author) Bonnie G. Mani
Publication date:03 December 2009
Length of book:130 pages
Women, Men, and Human Capital Development in the Public Sector: Return on Investments analyzes the gap in wages paid to women and men who work for federal, state, and local governments, factors that contribute to disparities in pay, and organizational strategies for narrowing the gap. The gender gap in wages and status is closing. Changes in public policies and social and organizational changes have facilitated the development of human capital. However many systemic, socio-psychological, and social barriers still limit women's career advancement in the public service. American women earn approximately 80 cents for every dollar earned by men. Women hold less than 30 percent of executive positions in the private sector as well as federal, state and local governments. This study analyzes factors, both legal and illegal, that lead to inequities in the pay and status of men and women. In recent turbulent economic times many organizations have eliminated jobs, facilitated early retirements, and lost employees frustrated by the lack of opportunities for advancement. Proactive organizations prepare for the unexpected by fully developing their human capital. Public policies have been less than effective in closing the wage gap, due in part to American culture and individual women's choices. Women are more likely than men to complete lower levels of education, enter the workforce later in life and occupy lower level positions. For these reasons the gender based wage gap may never close, but, as the author points out, investments in human capital development may facilitate women's career advancement and narrow the gap. The author develops specific strategies for narrowing the wage gap, and explores avenues of implementation.
As the need for succession planning looms over the public sector, this book offers a timely antidote for the challenges ahead. Packed with all of the relevant studies of the past few decades and bolstered by original research, Bonnie Mani provides both guideposts and specific recommendations for human capital development and the difference gender makes. H.R. offices and concerned managers should heed the lessons within if they want to change gender disadvantages of the past. This book is a gem for anyone interested in advancing women's leadership in the public sector.