Women in Manufacturing: The Scottish Evidence
This paper examines women’s participation in the manufacturing sector in Scotland to identify patterns of participation, occupational segregation (horizontal and vertical), gendered skills gaps, and gender differences apprenticeships and other skill pipelines. The impact of women’s participation on earnings and on the gender pay gap is also examined. The research methodology comprised secondary data and a literature review, analysis of existing national datasets and some primary data collection and analysis. Whilst the focus of this research is on quantitative data analysis, some qualitative data was generated from industry stakeholders. The findings reveal significant patterns of horizontal and vertical segregation. Men are overrepresented in ‘good’ jobs and women are overrepresented in ‘bad’ jobs. More than one-third of women currently working in the sector are located in sub-sectors and occupational levels most at risk of skills-biased technological change. There is an exceptionally high gender pay gap relative to the rest of the Scottish economy, and gendered skill pipelines and inflexible workplace practices are endemic. The theoretical and policy implications of these findings are discussed.