Women, Migration and Labour Markets – Prof Mary Silles, Northumbria University
About the Seminar
Women with more children tend to have lower labour supply and earnings. Why is this? There are two broad explanations. One is a selection story: women with more children would work less even in the absence of their children. Another story is one of causation: childcare will make you a different type of employee, and children will lead to lower labour supply and earnings. Distinguishing between these scenarios is the objective of this study. Using the birth of twins this research carefully examines the impact of children on women’s labour force participation and earnings. The birth of twins is an important innovation to tackle problems that arise because fertility is largely a matter of choice for women in the United Kingdom. This research is interesting because it provides deep insights into women’s labour market behaviour following the transition into parenthood.
About the Speaker
Mary Silles is Professor of Economics and Head of the Economics Subject Group at Northumbria University. Before moving to Northumbria in 2020, she held previous appointments at the University of Hull, University of Chicago, the University of Copenhagen, the National University of Ireland, and the International Monetary Fund. In 2002, she received a doctorate in economics from the University of Oxford. She is a labour economist with an ongoing research programme in the economics of education. Her work in this field features some of the most advanced research in economics and has generated many important insights into practical questions in education. Her study of adopted children in the United States is the largest evaluation of adopted children’s educational success in the world.
Professor Silles say: “My research is a deep source of personal satisfaction, the greatest pleasure of my academic life is teaching. Over the years I have benefited greatly from rigorous discussions on important economic issues with many of my students. I am very proud of all my students many of whom have gone on to have successful careers in economics, finance and academia.”