Size-dependent gender gaps in entrepreneurship

The case of Chile


  • David Cuberes Clark University
  • Marc Teignier Universitat de Barcelona



gender inequality, aggregate productivity, talent misallocation, firm size, Chile


This paper documents differences in firm size depending on whether their manager is a man or a woman and studies the aggregate implications of these gender gaps in Chile. We document that in 2007 less than a quarter of firms are managed by women and that this gap takes its largest value for managers with tertiary education or more. In terms of their number of workers, female-run firms are on average about three times smaller than those run by men. Moreover, the ratio of men to women managers is always above one, but it is much higher for large and medium firms than for small or micro ones. These differences remain significant after controlling for several manager and firm characteristics. We then use an extended version of the theoretical framework developed in Cuberes and Teignier (2016) to incorporate these facts and obtain quantitative predictions about their effects on aggregate productivity and income in Chile. We find that the observed gender gaps in entrepreneurship in Chile generate a fall in aggregate productivity and aggregate income of 7.5%.


Bento, P., L. Shao, and F. Sohail (2021). ”Gender Gaps in Time Use and Entrepreneurship.” Manuscript.

Bertrand, M. (2017), ”The Glass Ceiling.” Becker Friedman Institute for Research in Economics Working Paper No. 2018-38.

Cameron, A. C., and Trivedi, P. K. (2005). Microeconometrics: Methods and Applications. Cambridge.

Cavalcanti, T., and Tavares, J. (2016). “The Output Cost of Gender Discrimination: A Model-Based Macroeconomic Estimate.” Volume 126, Issue 590, February, pp. 109–134.

Chiplunkar, G., and P. K. Goldberg (2021). ”Aggregate Implications of Barriers to Female Entrepreneurship,” NBER Working Papers 28486.

Crespi, G., Tacsir, E., and Vargas, F. (2016). “Innovation Dynamics and Productivity: Evidence for Latin America.” Chapter 2 in Firm Innovation and Productivity in Latin America and the Caribbean. Inter-American Development Bank.

Cubas, G., C. Juhn, and P. Silos (2019). “Coordinated Work Schedules and the Gender Wage Gap.” National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc NBER Working Papers 26548.

Cubas, G., C. Juhn, and P. Silos, ”Work-Care Balance Over the Day and the Gender Wage Gap.” Forthcoming, American Economic Review PP.

Cuberes, D., and Teignier, M. (2016). “Aggregate Costs of Gender Gaps in the Labor Market: A Quantitative Estimate.” Journal of Human Capital, vol. 10, no. 1.

Cuberes, D., and Teignier, M. (2014). “Gender Inequality and Economic Growth: A Critical Review.” Journal of International Development, vol. 26, Issue 2, pp. 260-276, March.

Dayıo˘glu, M., and Kırdar, M.G. (2010). “Determinants of and Trends in Labor Force Participation of Women in Turkey.” Welfare and Social Policy Analytical Work Program Working Paper Number:5. State Planning Organization of the Republic of Turkey and World Bank.

Dollar D., and Gatti, R. (1999). “Gender Inequality, Income and Growth: Are Good Times Good for Women?” Policy Research Report on Gender and Development Working Paper Series No. 1. World Bank, Washington, DC.

Galor, O., and Weil, D. N. (1996). “The Gender Gap, Fertility, and Growth.” American Economic Review 85(3), 374–387.

Goldin, C., ”A Grand Gender Convergence: Its Last Chapter,” American Economic Review, 2014, 104 (4), 1091–1119

Greene, W. H. (2012). Econometric Analysis. Seventh Edition. Pearson.

Hsieh, C. T., Hurst, E., Jones, C. I., Klenow, P. J. (2019). The allocation of talent and US economic growth. Econometrica, 87(5), 1439-1474.

International Labor Organization (2104). “Global Employment Trends.”

Kantis, H., Federico, J., Angelelli, P, and Garcia, S.I. (2016). “Business Performance in Young Latin American Firms.” Chapter 6 in Firm Innovation and Productivity in Latin America and the Caribbean. Inter-American Development Bank.

Lucas Jr., R. E. (1978). “On the Size Distribution of Business Firms.” The Bell Journal of Economics 9(2), 508-523.

MANUAL DE USO Encuesta Longitudinal de Empresas-2007, Gobierno de Chile.

Morazzoni, M., and A. Sy (2021). ”Female Entrepreneurship, Financial Frictions and Capital Misallocation in the US.” Manuscript.

Ranasinghe, A. (2020). ”Misallocation across Establishment Gender,” Working Papers 2020-2, University of Alberta, Department of Economics.

Variyam, J. N., and Kraybill, D. S. (1992). ”Empirical Evidence on Determinants of Firm Growth,“ Economics Letters, Volume 38, Issue 1, January, pages 31-36.

World Bank, (2012). “World Development Report 2012: Gender Equality and Development.”






Regular articles

How to Cite

Size-dependent gender gaps in entrepreneurship: The case of Chile. (2022). Latin American Economic Review, 31, 1-19.

Similar Articles

1-10 of 19

You may also start an advanced similarity search for this article.