Life Cycle Wages of Doctors An Empirical Analysis of the Earnings of Norwegian Physicians
HERO WP 2009/11: Author: Knut Fjeldvig, K., Department of Economics, University of Oslo (PDF)
We use individual panel data to estimate age‐earnings profiles for Norwegian physicians. Based on data covering the 1993‐2006 period we find that the age‐earning profiles of physicians share many of the attributes of the classical Mincer function. Physician`s earnings rise, but a decreasing rate, for the first 20 years after medical training; they peak between the ages of 55 and 59; and they decline slightly toward the end of the career. We observe that there will be complications when using the regular cross‐sectional methods because of cohort and period effects on income.
Using fixed‐effects method therefore provides a more accurate picture of the profiles. When looking at profiles by gender we find that there are large differences between the earnings of male and female physicians, some of which can be attributed to reduced labor supply during child‐rearing years and some to lower investments in specialization among female doctors. We also discover differences in the profiles of physicians educated in Norway and abroad and discuss alternative explanations for this pattern.