Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Second Department


Reader 1

Stacey Wood

Reader 2

Roberto Pedace

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Rights Information

© 2016 Christine S. Gao


As of 2016, women in the U.S. are still making 80 cents on the dollar relative to men, and even with controls for other factors such as education, experience, and hours worked, the pay disparity is still around eight percent. The equity, efficiency wage, and Cognitive Evaluation Theories, suggest that a closed gender wage gap would be more beneficial to society. This paper uses these theories to investigate the relationship between productivity and pay disparity by using an ordinary least squares regression model to test the effects of the gender wage ratio on labor productivity while controlling for some human capital characteristics. Additionally, this paper furthers the hypotheses that the wage gap is detrimental to labor productivity and worker well-being by proposing a study in which a simulated wage gap is predicted to negatively affect worker satisfaction, motivation, and productivity. Findings and implications for further research are discussed.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.