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School of Business professors' study on women in the workplace highlighted in Crain's column

May 19, 2013

Mary Kramer, Crain's Detroit Business publisher wrote about a study by Wayne State University professors Sudip Datta and Mai Iskandar-Datta regarding women in the workplace. The Dattas, a husband-and-wife couple in the School of Business Administration, conducted research of nearly 1,600 CFOs in U.S. publicly traded companies between 1994 and 2007. Collecting information on education and controlling for that and industry and company performance variables, they found CFOs -- men and women -- were hired at comparable salaries. But within five years, there was a 5 percent compensation gap. Why? Two factors, said Sudip Datta. "They take women for granted." Women were viewed as less likely to jump ship and move to other opportunities, probably for family reasons. Second, women were less likely than men to negotiate better compensation packages over the years. Their study, with co-author Abhijit Guha, was published in the May issue of the Harvard Business Review.