Segregation Patterns in Dual Vocational Training in Germany: Increasing Advantages for Young Women?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 6:30 PM
Room: Booth 42
Oral Presentation
Corinna KLEINERT , Institute for Employment Research (IAB), Nuernberg, Germany
In Germany, gender segregation in the system of vocational training and education (VET) is strong and persistent. This system consists of three sectors: dual vocational training, the largest sector, the much smaller part of school-based training, and vocational preparation measures, bridging schemes for school leavers who cannot find regular training positions. Existing research mainly concentrated on most visible segregation line in this system: Traditionally, dual training focused on male dominated training occupations in industry, craft and construction. In contrast, women were (and still are) heavily concentrated in school-based training, where many health and clerical assistant occupations are being taught. Less is known, however, about segregation patterns within these subsectors, particularly in the dual training system, their change over time, and their effects on employment prospects of female and male apprentices.

In recent decades, the labor market has undergone major structural changes. Skill-biased technological change and sectoral change have resulted in more challenging requirements for future workers and changing demands for occupations and qualifications, which have been reflected in shifts in the occupational composition of the dual system. Today, the majority of training contracts are found in service occupations. However, we do not know how these long-term structural changes affected segregation patterns in dual training and transitions from training to work in female and male training occupations.

Against this background, this papers aims to answer two questions: First, in what respect have segregation patterns within the dual system of vocational training changed over time? Second, could young women profit from structural labor market changes in terms of smoother transitions from training to work? These questions are answered by using large-scale registry data of the Federal Employment Agency on dual training and subsequent employment biographies in Germany in between 1977 and 2010.