In Des Moines Register’s recent article about the pay gap between men and women working for the State of Iowa, the headlines and introductory paragraphs seemed to imply that there is something wrong about the fact that men working for the State get paid, on average, about $5,300 more than women. (See link below.) The proper question that needs to be asked and answered is: Are men and women with substantially the same job and qualifications paid differently or treated differently?
The full article was fairly balanced. Toward the end of the fairly lengthy article the Register reported: “A 2006 study at the University of Iowa found that almost all faculty pay variations were the result of known factors that were expected to affect salary, including the discipline taught, seniority, tenure status and faculty rank.” “When those factors were taken into account, ‘there were no overall statistically significant gender- or minority-status based salary differences,’ Jeneane Beck, a University of Iowa spokeswoman, said.” Also further down in the article the Register quoted Iowa State University economist, Dave Swensen, saying, “It remains that large fractions of administrative support employment are female, which do earn substantially less than management, technical and other professional occupations,”
So, although there may or may not be some isolated problems, overall there appears to be no overall problem with the pay difference that was reported.