The importance of wage structure is frequently interpreted as indirect evidence of the role played by labour market institutions. The current paper follows in this tradition, examining the role of wage structure in explaining the trend in the gender wage gap over the period 1973–91 for both Australia and the UK. The focus is upon whether changes in wage structure (and associated gender wage gap) both across country and over time are compatible with institutional explanations. Combining comparisons both cross‐country and over time yields a more stringent, albeit indirect, test of the role of institutions.
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