Economic Security, Mobility and Equity (ESME)2021-10-28T14:36:08-04:00

Economic, Security, Mobility and Equity (ESME)

Whether paid or unpaid, women’s work is crucial for their families’ economic security and well-being. Greater gender equality in paid and unpaid work will reduce poverty and improve economic growth and prosperity; persistent inequity in employment and family work is costing all of us. Women are held back by the undervaluation of historically female work, workplaces designed as if workers had no family responsibilities, and a broken-down work-family infrastructure.

IWPR’s ESME program highlights the extent of pay inequalities, and the role played by stark occupational segregation in perpetuating unequal pay. We conduct research and analysis on women’s labor force participation and employment trends; workforce development, non-traditional employment, and apprenticeships; the impact of sex discrimination and harassment on women’s career advancement and mobility; the gender pay gap and pay inequity across race and ethnicity; work-family policies and employer practices; the and the impact of automation and technological advances on women workers.

We work with policymakers, employers, advocates, and practitioners to identify promising practices and policy solutions.

Building the Future
Build(ing) the Future: Bold Policies for a Gender-Equitable Recovery

This report, Build(ing) the Future: Bold Policies for a Gender-Equitable Recovery, provides a framework for shared prosperity and equitable economic recovery. It examines the impact of the economic crisis and recession on working women, their families, and communities. It provides a blueprint for a gender-equitable recovery that is not only about meeting the immediate economic needs of women and families, but lays out a long-term strategy for creating stronger systems and institutions that reflect the experiences and contributions of women.

Breadwinner Mothers
Holding Up Half the Sky: Mothers as Workers, Primary Caregivers, & Breadwinners During COVID-19

The loss of jobs in sectors dominated by women will have a devastating impact of families, especially those headed by single mothers or where women are the primary or co-breadwinner. One in two of more than 30 million families in the U.S. with children under the age of 18 have a breadwinner mother, who contributes at least 40 percent of the earnings to the household.

Gender Wage Gap
The Gender Wage Gap: 2019 Earnings Differences by Race and Ethnicity

The gender wage gap in weekly earnings for full-time workers in the United States narrowed marginally between 2018 and 2019. In 2019, the ratio of women’s to men’s median weekly full-time earnings was 81.5 percent, leaving a wage gap of 18.5 percent.

Future of Work
The Future of Care Work: Improving the Quality of America’s Fastest-Growing Jobs

Paid adult care work jobs are expected to increase substantially in the coming years, due to both an aging population and a comparatively low risk of automation for many of these jobs. These jobs, however, are among the lowest quality occupations in the U.S. labor market, with paid adult care workers facing low earnings, limited access to benefits, high rates of injury on the job, and scheduling unpredictability.

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The construction industry’s off-putting treatment of women is making its labor shortage worse

Markets Insider There's a historic labor shortage, especially in the construction industry. But sexism seems to be stronger than economics. More than four in 10 women and non-binary tradespeople who work in construction-related jobs have said they left or "seriously" considered leaving the industry's trades [...]

By |November 22, 2021|

New Tradeswomen Survey Shows that Construction Industry Needs to Tackle Discrimination and Harassment to Retain Women; Oregon Initiatives Show How

More women than ever work in the construction trades. The Infrastructure Bill, signed by President Biden last week, will create new opportunities for the construction industry to further improve women’s access to good jobs in the industry. Doing it right will require input and direction [...]

By |November 22, 2021|

PBS Newshour: Prison offers little to ease domestic violence trauma. This program tries to fill the gaps

“More than 40% of black women experience physical violence by an intimate partner, compared with about 30% of women overall,” according to data by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research in a new PBS Newshour episode. Watch the full episode here.

By |November 22, 2021|

Build Back Better Bill is “Down Payment on a Fairer, More Equitable Economic Future,” says Institute for Women’s Policy Research President and CEO C. Nicole Mason

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) today hailed House passage of the Build Back Better bill and released the following statement from its President and CEO C. Nicole Mason. “The Build Back Better bill is a down payment on a fairer, more equitable economic [...]

By |November 19, 2021|

Build Back Better Bill is “Down Payment on a Fairer, More Equitable Economic Future,” says Institute for Women’s Policy Research President and CEO C. Nicole Mason

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 19, 2021 Contact: William Lutz | lutz@iwpr.org | (202) 684-7534  Washington, D.C. — The Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR) today hailed House passage of the Build Back Better bill and released the following statement from its President and CEO C. [...]

By |November 19, 2021|

IWPR’s President and CEO C. Nicole Mason on White Picket Fence Podcast

Check out @IWPResearch President and CEO as she joined @juliekkohler1 for an episode of White Picket Fence podcast! Tune in to listen to @cnicolemason discuss the impact that the pandemic had on women's participation in the labor force, and how decades of progress disappeared overnight. [...]

By |November 16, 2021|
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