Causes of gender pay gap in Europe
: a panel analysis

  • Maria Madalena da Silva Valente Brandão (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The main goal of this dissertation is to understand how the unadjusted gender pay gap index (UGPGI) evolved in the member states of the European Union (EU), from 2008 until 2018, and what factors can explain in the most part that evolution. Firstly, it was presented in a dashboard all the relevant information concerning the data collected – which includes family, cultural and labour market related information – from multiple open access sources. One of the most relevant conclusions retrieved was the possible existence of discrimination due to the presence of glass-ceiling effects, in aggregational terms of the EU. Despite the positive trend registered in the labour market participation and the greater investment of women in their education, the occupation of managerial positions does not present such evolution. Given the unadjusted nature of the explained variable, a panel analysis was performed through the implementation of a linear and an exponential regression, in order to try to explain such disparities. Note that the lack of information in the accessed databases limited the explanatory variables included in the regression. However, in this case, the most important finding was that cultural variables are relevant in the explanation of the UGPGI, specifically the main religion and legal origin of a country, as well as its characterization through some of Hofstede’s cultural dimensions. Regarding originality, a panel analysis is not very common in the research of the gender pay gap, mainly concerning the European Union, nor is the development of a dashboard to present all the data. Also, almost every cultural variable considered has not yet been included in the study of the UGPGI. The remaining attributes have been considered in other studies of this kind but had not been comprised together in one.
Date of Award30 Jun 2021
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorFrancisca Guedes de Oliveira (Supervisor)


  • Gender pay gap index
  • Panel regression
  • Culture
  • European Union


  • Mestrado em Gestão

Cite this