The male chauvinist bias of a Bill McBride graph. 2 graphs.
Why are we even having this discussion?
Bill Mc Bride and Tyler Cowen take a slight long run decline of the male participation rate (40-44 years of age, unemployed+employed men as a % of the total population of the same age) as a sign of ‘secular stagnation’. As Cowen states: “You sometimes hear there is no evidence of automation putting people out of work, but arguably the automation of manufacturing, plus IT-enabled foreign competition, are significant factors behind this trend”
According to feminists scientists tend to exclude women from scientific discourse. So, let’s pose the feminist question: does the picture alter when we include women into the analysis. See graph 1 and 2. Graph 1 (the male graph) is more or less consistent with the Mc Bride graph albeit in fact only for Italy. Graph 2 (the female graph) – not so much (ahem). Mc Bride and Cowen really have to answer the question why automation is consistent with dramatic increases in the female activity rate – that’s where all the action is. Couldn’t resist to include Turkey in the female graph: again, dramatic changes. And there are clear political/economic/social/cultural differences between countries. These seem much more significant that automation.
Source: Eurostat, data retrieved 28 February 2016. Technical details: the Eurostat phrase is activity rate while the BLS uses the word participation rate, the Eurostat data base does not contain data for the 40-44 group but only for the 25-54 group.