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When it comes to public relations work, women earn about $8,000 per year less than their male counterparts, pocketing about $330,000 less over the course of their careers, researchers at San Diego State University have concluded.

David Dozier, Bey-Ling Sha and Hongmei Shen, public relations professors at SDSU, surveyed over 4,500 randomly selected public relations professionals over the course of a year, accounting for factors such as experience, specialization, and managerial roles in addition to gender.

“For the first time, we were able to statistically account for and thereby eliminate all the excuses in the public relations profession,” says Sha about gender-based pay disparities. “Even when you account for all the other possible things that affect pay, women still make $8,000 less than men annually in public relations.”

Before factoring in findings that women typically gravitated toward lower-paying specialties in the field, had less professional experience, were more likely to experience career interruptions, and had less managerial participation, the gender pay gap stood at $21,600 annually.

Commenting further, Sha places part of the blame for the disparity on women.

“As an employer, one can choose to pay women less than men,” says Sha. “But people who are paid less than they’re worth also make the choice to accept that and stay with the company instead of moving on or doing something about it.”

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Visduh June 29, 2012 @ 9:14 p.m.

Public relations work is about the most frivolous and meaningless sort of thing imaginable. Earn a living with your mouth. Try to convince the public that bad is good, black is white, sour is sweet, cold is hot, a bad guy is really a champion of the people, and . . . it goes on. So who the heck cares if women earn less than men in this borderline illegitimate "profession?" Who cares a whit about anything involving public relations? Women are generally seen as better talkers and convincers than men. If they don't turn it into piles of lucre, does that imply lack of fairness? Does anybody really care? Anybody?


Burwell June 29, 2012 @ 10:28 p.m.

Public relations should not be taught at SDSU, nor should SDSU hire "public relations" professors. Public relations has no place in a college curriculum.


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