Explaining Inequality in Economic Outcomes: An Empirical and Experimental Approach
My thesis contributes to the discussion about economic inequality using two different approaches, an empirical and an experimental approach. In the first part (paper one and two) I use an empirical approach to explain inequality in economic outcomes, here earnings. For the analysis, I use two data sets for Germany provided by the Research Data Center of the German Federal Employment Agency at the Institute for Employment Research. In the first paper, I focus on a theoretical problem of inequality measurement: the earnings accounting period. The focus of the second paper is on earnings inequality caused by structural change in the labor market and sample selection effects. In the second part of my thesis (paper three and four) I use an experimental approach to contribute to the literature on inequality in opportunities. I use economic experiments on risk preferences to examine the impact of gender quotas on risk preferences of groups compared to individuals (third paper) and economic preferences on risk and time preferences and trust to know what part of observed outcome inequality may be attributed to the family background and in particular to the sibling composition (fourth paper).