Flexible Schedules Could Shrink Pay Gap

Martinan/Thinkstock(CAMBRIDGE, Mass.) -- Flexible work schedules may be the key to doing away with the disparity in pay between men and women.

That's the finding of Harvard University economist Claudia Goldin who wanted to learn why most full-time working women of nearly all ages only earn 77 percent of what men are paid.

After examining various occupations, Goldin discovered that the technology, science and health industries, which tend to offer flexible schedules, generally have smaller pay gaps between the sexes than other businesses.

The economist theorized that pay differentials are primarily due to women having to interrupt careers to have families, meaning that in order to narrow the gap, workers need to have more control of their schedules.

Therefore, Goldin concluded, "What the last chapter must contain for gender equality is not a zero sum game in which women gain and men lose. Many workers will benefit from greater flexibility."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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