DOI: 10.1111/ilr.12407 ISSN:

Shifting Motherhood Penalty and Fatherhood Premium in China's Gig Economy: Impact of Parental Status on Income Changes

Qi ZHENG, Zitong QIU, Weiguo YANG
  • Management of Technology and Innovation
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management
  • Strategy and Management


The fatherhood premium and motherhood penalty have been primary subjects in the issue of gender income gaps. Using an Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) model, influencing mechanism analysis, and Oaxaca–Blinder decomposition, we examine gig workers’ income changes before and after parenthood by gender. We find that the motherhood penalty is vanishing, while the fatherhood premium has devolved into a fatherhood penalty in the gig economy due to work pressures and the gender segregation of occupations that force men to balance time and energy between work and childcare in a way that is not as prevalent outside the gig economy.

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