For or Against Equal Pay? A Study of Common Perceptions
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionCompensation and Benefits Review. 2023, 55 (3), 87-110. 10.1177/08863687231162812
The topic of equal pay usually sparks debates with diverse opinions ranging from those supporting equal pay to those that oppose equal pay. This study attempted to gather empirical data on how individuals perceive equal pay. A questionnaire was designed that probed the respondents’ perceptions of equal pay along 13 dimensions. The respondents were recruited in Norway and grouping analysis was performed according to several demographic factors. The results show that political affiliation, gender, and work union membership were the strongest predictors of standpoint regarding equal pay. The strongest associations with equal pay were observed for unfairness, communism, low realism, and demotivation. Small gender differences were also observed. We argue that data about common perceptions of equal pay is necessary to make informed adjustments to how work is rewarded, and resources distributed. How individuals are to be compensated for the cost of education was the most frequent reservation.