Karen Mumford

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Karen Mumford is Professor of Economics, and Director of the York Asia Research Network (YARN). She received her doctorate in economics from the Australian National University (ANU) in 1991. She has subsequently taught at the ANU, the University of Warwick and the University of York. She has held visiting positions at the ANU, Dartmouth, Harvard, and Princeton. Karen has been the Chair of the Royal Economic Society Women's Committee, the Convenor of the UK Labour Economics Study Group (WPEG), a Harkness Fellow and a Leverhulme Fellow. She was a member of the Resolution Foundation Minimum Wage Review Committee, is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), and was appointed CBE for services to economics and labour market diversity in 2016.

Departmental roles

  • Performance Reviewer
  • PST Leader for Applied Economics and Economics History
  • Undergraduate Module Review Committee, member

University roles

  • Faculty Board, member
  • University Partnership and Enterprise Committee, elected Faculty representative
  • UofY ESRC Peer Review College, member
  • University Court, member 
  • Research Centre for Social Sciences Steering Group, member
  • Lead, York Asia Research Network (YARN)



Karen’s research is concerned with labour economics, her research topics include: wage bargaining; industrial disputation; employment dynamics; the relative labour market position of women; job satisfaction; implications from considering networks; and consequences from using the family as the unit of analysis. Much of Karen's work involves international comparisons, especially Australia with the UK.


  • "Pay and Well-Being in the NHS: The Role of Networks" with Anna Einarsdottir, Bridget Lockyer and Melisa Sayli.
  • “Workplace Selection and Gender Pay Gaps in Britain” with Peter N. Smith.
  • "Pay, Well-Being and Job Satisfaction Amongst Academic Economists in the UK" with Cristina Sechel.
  • “Labour Supply and Childcare for Two-Parent Families: A Structural Approach” with Antonia Parera-Nicolau and Yolanda Pena-Boquete.
  • “The Selection of Economics Lecturers into the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework Exercise: Outputs and Gender” with  Richard McManus  and Cristina Sechel.


  • Edith Aguirre Rodriguez, University of York, 2015 -
  • Meng Ni, University of York, 2014 -

See http://www.york.ac.uk/economics/our-people/phd-students/

Former Research Students

My former research students include:

  • Ruben Martinez Cardenas, University of York, degree awarded 2017. Topic: “Essays on the Microeconomic Analysis of Choice, Trust, and Organised Crime with an Emphasis on Mexico”  (Now at Leicester Business School, De Montford University).
  • Cristina Sechel, University of York, degree awarded 2016. Topic: "Essays on the Measurement of Subjective Well-Being across Countries" (Now at the Institute for the Economic Analysis of Decision Making, InstEAD, University of Sheffield).
  • Andrew Sutton, University of York, degree awarded 2014. Topic: "Gross Worker Flows and the Great Recession in the United Kingdom." (Now at the Office for Budget Responsibility, OBR).
  • Laura C. Rojas Blanco, University of York, degree awarded 2013. Topic: “The Influence of Gender Beliefs and Early Exposure to Math, Science and Technology in Female Degree Choices.” (Now at the Department of Economics, University of Costa Rica.)
  • Yekaterina Chzhen, University of York, degree awarded 2011. Topic: “ Gender Differences in Earnings and Occupational Attainment in Europe.” (Now at the Office of Research, UNICEF, Florence.)
  • Francesco Mariotti, University of York, degree awarded 2011. Topic: “The Economic Analysis of Insecurity: Applications to Job Insecurity, Assets Distribution and Contraceptives Use in a Household Context.” (Now at Alysso, Trento.)
  • Yuxin Li, University of York, degree awarded 2008. Topic: “The Accumulation of Human Capital: Evidence from a UK Longitudinal Study.” (Now at the Shanghai International Studies University.)
  • Filipe Almeida Santos, University of York, degree awarded 2006. Topic: “Training, Wage Compression and Productivity Outcomes.” (Now at Martifer Solar Group, Portugal.)
  • Antonia Nicolau Perara, University of York, degree awarded 2004. Topic: “European Families’ Labour Supply: Empirical Analysis for Britain and Spain.” (Now at the European Commission, Brussels.)
  • Vitor Escaria Alvarez, University of York, degree awarded 2004. Topic: “Job Creation and Job Destruction over the Business Cycle in Portugal.” (Now at Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestao, ISEG, Universidade Tecnica de Lisboa.)
  • Luis Murillo-Zamorano, University of York, degree awarded 2004. Topic: “Essays on Economic Efficiency and Productivity Growth. (Now at the University of Extremadura.)


Selected publications

Full details of publications can be found at RePEc

Recent Publications

  • McManus, R., Mumford, K. and Sechel, C. “The Selection of Economics Lecturers into the 2014 UK Research Excellence Framework Exercise: Outputs and Gender.” University of York, Discussion Papers in Economics No. 17/16, October 2017.
  • Mariotti, F., Mumford, K.A., and  Pena-Boquete, Y. "Education, Job Insecurity and the Within Country Migration of Couples" IZA Journal of Migration 6(1); 1-18, January 2017. 
  • Butcher, T. Mumford, K. and Smith, P.N. Workplaces, Low pay and the Gender Earnings Gap in Britain. Report for the Low Pay Commission (LPC, London). September 2016. 103pp. [ESRC Impact Acceleration Award funded co-production with Tim Butcher, Chief Economist, Low Pay Commission.] IZA Discussion Paper 10453, January 2017.
  • Mariotti, F., Dixon, M., Mumford, K.A., and  Pena-Boquete, Y. “Job Insecurity Within the Household: Are Australian Householders Caring when it Comes to Risk Sharing?”  Australian Journal of Labour Economics 19(2): 77-90, December 2016.
  • Mumford, K.A. "On Gender, Research Discipline and being an Economics Journal Editor" Royal Economics Society Newsletter 172, April 2016.
  • Harcourt, G.C., Mumford, K., Spencer, B. and Racionero, M.  “Steven Dowrick 7 May 1953 – 3 August 2013: Tributes.” Economic and Labour Relations Review 26(4); 681-684, December 2015.
  • Mumford, K.A. "Highs and Lows with the Women's Committee Surveys." Royal Economics Society Newsletter 171: 5-11, October 2015
  • Mitka, M. M. G., Mumford, K. A. and Sechel, C. “The 10th Royal Economic Society Women’s Committee Survey: The Gender Balance of Academic Economics in the UK 2014.” Royal Economic Society Report. July 2015 49 pp.
  • Mumford, K.A. and Smith, Peter N.“Peer Salaries and Employee Satisfaction in the Workplace.” Manchester School 83(3): 307-313 June 2015
  • “An Interview with Karen Mumford.” The Economic Review 32(2): 4-5, April 2015.
  • Mariotti, F., Mumford, K.A., and  Pena-Boquete, Y. “Household Asset Holding Diversification in Australia.” Australian Economic Review, 48(1): 43-64, March 2015.
  • Mumford, K.A. “On the Gender Gap in Economics Enrolment.” Royal Economic Society Newsletter 167: 7-9, October 2014.
  • Carrier, H. and Mumford, K.A. "A Career in Modelling: A Note on the Government Economic Service." RES Newsletter 165:20-21, April 2014
  • Bain, G., Gregg, P., Manning, A., McNight, A., Mumford, K. A., Pilpott, J., Smith, N. & Wilson, T. More Than a Minimum: The Resolution Foundation Review of the Future of the National Wage. Mar 2014. (Resolution Foundation, London.)
  • Chzhen, Y.,  Mumford, K.A., and Nicodema, C. The Gender Pay Gap in the Australian Private Sector: Is Selection Relevant Across the Wage Distribution.” Economic Record 89(286): 367-381. September 2013.
  • L.C. Blanco, M. Mitka, K.Mumford and J. Roman. "The Gender Balance of Academic Economics 2012: Royal Economic Society Women’s Committee Survey." Royal Economic Society Report. July 2013.
  • Monojit Chatterji and Mumford, K. A. “Flying High and Laying Low in the Public and Private Sectors: A Comparison of Pay Differentials for Full-Time Male Employees”. Australian Journal of Labour Economics 15(3): 235-259. November 2012.
  • Drolet, Marie and Mumford, Karen. The Gender Pay Gap for Private Sector Employees in Canada and Britain.” British Journal of Industrial Relations 50(3): 529-553. September 2012.
  • Li, Yuxin and Mumford, K.A.“Aspirations, Expectations and Education Outcomes for Children in Britain: Considering Relative Measures of Family Efficiency.” International Journal of Learning 18(4): 289-308. February 2012.
  • Chzhen, Yekaterina and Mumford, K. A. “Gender Gaps across the Earnings Distribution in Britain.” Labor Economics 18(6): 837-844. December 2011.
  • Monojit, Chatterji. Smith, Peter N. and Mumford, K. A. “The Public-Private Sector Gender Wage Differential: Evidence from Matched Employee-Workplace Data.” Applied Economics 43(25-27): 3819-3834. November 2011.



Second Year

  • Cost Benefit Analysis

Third Year

  • Labour Economics


  • Labour Economics
  • Project Appraisal

External activities


Invited talks and conferences

Some Recent

  • Roundtable: Inclusive or Exclusive Global Development. Scrutinizing Financial Inclusion. (Chair). University of York, November 2018.
  • Work, Pensions and Labour Economics (WPEG) Conference, Sheffield July 2018.
  • Chatham House International Policy Forum G20 2018. Making Gender Equality Happen, London, July 2018.
  • Society of Economics of the Household Conference, Paris, May 2018.
  • Scottish Economic Society Conference, Perth, April 2018.
  • Royal Economic Society Conference, Brighton, March 2018. 
  • Australian Labour Market Research Conference (ALMR), Canberra, December 2017.
  • Inaugural Conference of the Asian and Australasian Society of Labour Economics (AASLE), Canberra, December 2017.
  • Pay, Rank and Job Satisfaction, Australian Womens Economics Network, Melbourne, Australia, December 2017.
  • Five Giants: Then and Now - A Panel Debate. University of York, November 2017.
  • Work, Pensions and Labour Economics Study Group (WPEG) Conference, Sheffield July 2017.
  • Recognizing Women’s Role in our Economic Future. International Policy Forum G20. Chatham House, London July 2017.
  • Western Economic Association International Conference WEAI, San Diego USA, June 2017.
  • Low Pay Commission Fourth Annual Research Symposium, LPC. September 2016
  • Workshop on Labour and Family Economics (WOLFE), September 2016
  • Empowering Women for Economic Growth: The Smart Choice for the G20. 2016 International Policy Forum. Chatham House, London July 2016.
  • Private Roundtable on the Future of UK Retail. Fabian Society, London, July 2016.
  • Low Pay Commission, London, April 2016
  • Royal Economic Society Conference, Brighton, March 2016.

  • Royal Economic Society Conference, Manchester, April 2015.
  • Low Pay Commission, London, April 2015.
  • Journées Louis-André Gérard-Varet (LAGV) Conference, Aix-en-Provence, France, June 2015.
  • Bank of England, London, September 2015
  • Government Economic Service Training Day, London, September 2015
  • Joseph Rowntree Foundation, York, April 2014.
  • Royal Economic Society Conference, Manchester, April 2014.
  • IMaGEN Conference 2, University of Santiago de Compostella, September 2014.
  • Contemporary Economic Issues Lecture, University of East Anglia, October 2014.

  • Royal Economic Society Conference, Royal Holloway, April 2013.
  • Clare Hall, University of Cambridge, May 2013.
  • York Festival of Ideas, University of York, June 2013
  • IMaGEN Conference 1, University of Santiago de Compostella, July 2013.
  • Keynote Speaker. Australian Society of Economists Conference. Perth Australia, July 2013.
  • Economics Division, University of Leeds, November 2013.
  • Melbourne Institute of Applied Economics and Social Research, December 2013.
  • Department of Economics, Monash University, December 2013.
  • Crawford School of Public Policy (Public Lecture), Australian National University, December 2013.

Karen Mumford 2015

Karen Mumford
Department of Economics
Room: A/EC/019

Tel: 01904 323756


LPC Project: Gender Pay Gap and Low Pay in the UK

Lead, York Asia Research Network (YARN)

Office and feedback hours during term time:

Monday 9:30-11:30
or by email appointment during vacation periods