New Frontiers in Economics of the Household
Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 2:30 PM - 4:30 PM
- Chair: Charlotte Phelps, Temple University
Choosing Between Career and Family – Gender Roles as a Coordination Device in a Specialization Game
AbstractThis paper experimentally investigates the role of gender norms as a coordination device. 192 subjects, real heterosexual couples, play a symmetric coordination game where the two pure-strategy Nash equilibria result in unequal payoffs that favor either the male or the female partner. The strategies were framed neutrally in the control group (option A vs. B) and as a family specialization decision in the treatment group (option Career vs. Family). Subjects played the game once with their partner and once with a randomly matched stranger. Preliminary results are surprising in three respects: First, while payoff inequality increases dramatically to the benefit of male players in the Specialization treatment, coordination rates improve only by a small margin. That is, the probability that couples coordinate on the traditional gender role equilibrium increases, yet the overall probability to coordinate, and thus efficiency, does not improve much. Second, the effect is equally present among real couples and pairs of randomly matched strangers, where post-experimental redistribution of earnings is not possible. Finally, an investigation of individual choices by gender reveals an unexpected pattern: Compared to the control group, women opt for Career at a significantly lower rate in the Specialization treatment, regardless of familiarity with their partner. Men, however, are only more likely to opt for Career when they play with a stranger, but not with their real partner. The results support the notion that gender norms affect labor market choices of men and women and improve our understanding of how they operate.
Fifteen Years Since the Launching of “Review of Economics of the Household”: What Can Be Learned?
AbstractThe launching of the Review of Economics of the Household (REHO) in 2003 can be viewed as a natural experiment. In the spirit of the New Home Economics REHO proposed a unique blending of analyses of outcomes traditionally categorized as health economics (including so-called risky behaviors), macro-economics (in the case of savings), labor, finance (in the case of household finance), consumption and demographic economics, thereby transcending traditional fields of economics. What quantifiable outcomes have been affected since REHO‘s launching and its obtaining an impact factor? Have there been any quantifiable changes in the relative representation of certain topics in economics in general, and in related journals in particular, that could be attributed to REHO’s growth? Are there country-specific impacts?
Saving with Premeditation: How Poor Households in Bangladesh React to Access to Commitment Savings Accounts
AbstractAccess to commitment savings products is known to increase poor households’ savings. Our paper addresses the mechanism underlying this apparent behavioral anomaly, taking advantage of a unique dataset released by SafeSave, a Bangladeshi microfinance institution that launched the Long Term Savings commitment product in 2009. Our goal is to examine savers’ attitudes before they take up this product, in order to detect when savings start to increase. Our results suggest that the rise in savings associated with entering commitment savings is intentional and premeditated, since it starts a few months before households open the commitment account. The existence of such contemplation and preparation stages is in line with the “transtheoretical model of behavior change” (Prochaska and DiClemente, 1982; 1983) found in the psychological literature. Our paper suggests that poor households are more forward-looking than previously thought.
Harmed Today and Vulnerable Tomorrow: The Link between Traumatic Experiences and Subsequent Psychological Distress and Substance Abuse
AbstractWe investigate the impact of being a victim of trauma in childhood or emerging adulthood on subsequent mental health and substance abuse. We separately examine four different forms of maltreatment: home trauma, community trauma, sexual trauma, and stalking trauma. Our study is conducted using data drawn from three national data sets: the National Comorbidity Survey – Replication (NCS-R), the National Survey of American Life (NSAL), and the National Latino and Asian American Study (NLAAS). Information on the age of first onset is reported for mental disorders and the age of first victimization of traumatic events. In addition, mental health disorders are formally diagnosed rather than relying on self-reports of symptoms or prior outside diagnosis. Despite utilizing a more restrictive identification strategy than in previous studies, this study demonstrates that childhood trauma is strongly and significantly associated with adverse mental health outcomes and substance abuse during childhood and emerging adulthood.
- D1 - Household Behavior and Family Economics
- Z0 - General