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American Economic Review: Vol. 102 No. 7 (December 2012)

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Human Capital Investment and the Gender Division of Labor in a Brawn-Based Economy

Article Citation

Pitt, Mark M., Mark R. Rosenzweig, and Mohammad Nazmul Hassan. 2012. "Human Capital Investment and the Gender Division of Labor in a Brawn-Based Economy." American Economic Review, 102(7): 3531-60.

DOI: 10.1257/aer.102.7.3531

Abstract

A model of human capital investment and activity choice is used to explain facts describing gender differentials in the levels and returns to human capital investments and occupational choice. These include the higher return to and level of schooling, the small effect of healthiness on wages, and the large effect of healthiness on schooling for females relative to males. The model incorporates gender differences in the level and responsiveness of brawn to nutrition in a Roy-economy setting in which activities reward skill and brawn differentially. Evidence from rural Bangladesh provides support for the model and the importance of the distribution of brawn.

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Authors

Pitt, Mark M. (Brown U)
Rosenzweig, Mark R. (Yale U)
Hassan, Mohammad Nazmul (Institute of Nutrition and Food Science, Dhaka U)

JEL Classifications

I20: Education and Research Institutions: General
J16: Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
J24: Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
O15: Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
O18: Economic Development: Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure


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