My main research question focuses on why the Gender Pay Gap varies significantly across areas in Wales. The Welsh Gender Pay Gap in 2020 was estimated at 11.6%, but varied from 27.7% in Torfaen to -13.5% in Ceredigion. I am also interested in the impact of different national/devolved policies on the Gender Pay Gap and the gendered outcomes.
I completed my MSc in Economics at Cardiff University, my MA in Contemporary European Studies at the University of Bath, Charles University (Prague) and the Humboldt University (Berlin), and my Undergraduate at the London School of Economics in Geography with Economics.
Previously, I worked at the Wales Centre for Public Policy, where I worked on a range of Welsh Government and Public Services assignments. I also completed a Blue Book Traineeship in the External Relations Section of the European Economic and Social Committee in Brussels, where I worked on Trade Agreements and the accession of the Western Balkans to the EU, as part of the EU’s legislative process.
Primary Research interests
- Labour Economics
- Feminist Economics
- Public Policy
O’Hagan, A. & Nesom, S. (Forthcoming). Watching the Neighbours: Gender Budgeting in Scotland and Wales. Public Money & Management Special Issue.
Nesom, S. & MacKillop, E. (2020). What matters in the implementation of sustainable development policies? Findings from the Well-Bring of Future Generations (Wales) Act, 2015. Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning.
BS2547 British Economy
Why does the Gender Pay Gap Vary Across Areas in Wales?
This project is collaborative, working with Chwarae Teg (Wales’ leading Women’s charity) and seeks to examine the causes of regional variation of the Gender Pay Gap in Wales, in the context of continuing devolution. I hope to suitably incorporate intersectionality quantitatively, as well as build upon the recommendations of the Welsh Government’s Gender Equality Review.
It is important to be studying the Gender Pay Gap because it is a persistent and pervasive feature of the labour markets across the world, which has recently received significant policy attention, not least within the UK, where the then UK Prime Minister David Cameron announced the aim to ‘end the Gender Pay Gap in a generation’. However, whilst the Gender Pay Gap has been extensively investigated, with variation across times and countries well-documented, regional variation is still a relatively under researched area.
Wales presents an opportunity to study the regional Gender Pay Gap as (along with Northern Ireland), it has a smaller Gender Pay Gap across comparable measures than the rest of the UK. There is also large regional variation in Wales, with the Gender Pay Gap varying form 27.7% in Torfaen to -13.5% in Ceredigion. Devolution has also presented opportunities to tackle the Gender Pay Gap (and other gender equality issues) and is something that I wish to explore further in my PhD.
The project uses data from the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings, which provides a comprehensive overview of the structure and distribution of earnings in the UK, covering approximately 180,000 employees. I will apply econometric decomposition methods to decompose the difference between male and female wages into an explained and unexplained part. The latter is usually referred to as an upper bound measure of discrimination, as this term will also include gender differences in unobserved characteristics (e.g. preferences).
I also intend to quantitatively measure the effectiveness of different policies to tackle the gender pay gap (e.g. different pay transparent policies), as well as the impact of different national/devolved policies (e.g. childcare) on the Gender Pay Gap.
Economic and Social Research Council