The Journal of Economic Inequality

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 225–256 | Cite as

Top incomes and the gender divide

  • Anthony B. Atkinson
  • Alessandra CasaricoEmail author
  • Sarah Voitchovsky


In the recent research on top incomes, there has been little discussion of gender. A great deal is known about gender differentials in earnings, but how far does this carry over to total incomes? This paper investigates the gender divide at the top of the income distribution using tax record data for eight countries with individual taxation. It shows that women are strongly under-represented at the top of the distribution. Although the presence of women at the top has increased over time, the rise becomes smaller at the very top. The income gradient by gender has become more marked. The paper also shows that income composition differs by gender and exhibits significant changes over time, underlining the fact that it is not sufficient to look only at earned income.


Top income groups Gender Income composition 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anthony B. Atkinson
    • 1
  • Alessandra Casarico
    • 2
    Email author
  • Sarah Voitchovsky
    • 3
  1. 1.Nuffield College and Institute for New Economic Thinking at the Oxford Martin School, Oxford, and London School of EconomicsLondonUK
  2. 2.Università Bocconi, Milan, CESifo, Munich, and Dondena Research Centre on Social Dynamics and Public PolicyMilanItaly
  3. 3.Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, Carlton, and the Graduate Institute of International and Development StudiesGenevaSwitzerland

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