nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2015‒01‒14
seven papers chosen by
Michele Battisti
ifo Institut

  1. Early Health Shocks, Intrahousehold Resource Allocation, and Child Outcomes By Yi, Junjian; Heckman, James J.; Zhang, Junsen; Conti, Gabriella
  2. The Effects of Delayed Tracking: Evidence from German States By Simon Lange; Marten von Werder
  3. Intrahousehold Decision Making and Fertility By Doepke, Matthias; Kindermann, Fabian
  4. From the glass door to the glass ceiling: An analysis of the gender wage gap by age groups By Elena Dalla Chiara; Eleonora Matteazzi; Ilaria Petrarca
  5. An Empirical Investigation of Peer effects on Fertility Preferences By Ankita Mishra; Jaai Parasnis
  6. Identifying Gender Bias in Parental Attitude: An Experimental Approach By Lutfunnahar Begum; Philip J. Grossman; Asadul Islam
  7. Women Helping Women? Evidence from Private Sector Data on Workplace Hierarchies By Kunze, Astrid; Miller, Amalia

  1. By: Yi, Junjian (National University of Singapore); Heckman, James J. (University of Chicago); Zhang, Junsen (Chinese University of Hong Kong); Conti, Gabriella (University College London)
    Abstract: An open question in the literature is whether families compensate or reinforce the impact of child health shocks. Discussions usually focus on one dimension of child investment. This paper examines multiple dimensions using household survey data on Chinese child twins whose average age is 11. We find that, compared with a twin sibling who did not suffer from negative early health shocks at ages 0-3, the other twin sibling who did suffer negative health shocks received RMB 305 more in terms of health investments, but received RMB 182 less in terms of educational investments in the 12 months prior to the survey. In terms of financial transfers over all dimensions of investment, the family acts as a net equalizer in response to early health shocks for children. We estimate a human capital production function and establish that, for this sample, early health shocks negatively affect child human capital, including health, education, and socioemotional skills. Compensating investments in health as measured by BMI reduce the adverse effects of health shocks by 50%, but exacerbate the adverse impact of shocks on educational attainment by 30%.
    Keywords: early health shocks, intrahousehold resource allocation, human capital formation
    JEL: C23 D13 I12 J13
    Date: 2014–12
  2. By: Simon Lange (Georg-August-University Göttingen); Marten von Werder (Free University of Berlin)
    Abstract: Germany's education system stands out among OECD countries for early tracking: students are tracked into different secondary school types at the age of ten in most German states. In this paper we estimate the effects on educational outcomes of a reform that delayed tracking by two years. While our findings suggest that the reform had no effect on educational outcomes on average, we find a positive effect on male students with uneducated parents and a negative effect on males with educated parents. The reform thus increased equality of opportunity among males, yet not among females. We argue that the gendered pattern is best explained by developmental differences between boys and girls at the relevant age.
    Keywords: tracking; educational institutions; intergenerational mobility
    JEL: I21 I24 I28 J62
    Date: 2014–12–19
  3. By: Doepke, Matthias (Northwestern University); Kindermann, Fabian (University of Bonn)
    Abstract: The economic theory of fertility choice builds predominantly on the unitary model of the household, in which there is a single household utility function and potential intra-household disagreement is abstracted from. Empirical evidence suggests, however, that many (potential) mothers and fathers disagree on whether to have children, on how many children to have, and on when to have them. In this paper, we review existing work that brings models of intrahousehold conflict and bargaining to bear on fertility choice, and we point out promising future directions for this line of research.
    Keywords: fertility, bargaining, child care, limited commitment
    JEL: D13 J12 J13
    Date: 2014–12
  4. By: Elena Dalla Chiara (University of Verona, Italy); Eleonora Matteazzi (University of Trento, Italy); Ilaria Petrarca (University of Verona, Italy)
    Abstract: Using 2009 EU-SILC data for France, Italy, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, we decompose the gender wage gap for prime age workers. We adopt an age group approach to identify when and how the glass door and the glass ceiling effects arise and their persistency over time. The empirical results verify that the raw gender wage gap increases with age. In all considered countries, the glass ceiling effect is completely realized by the age of 30 and increases over time. French, Italian and British women have also to cope with the glass door as they enter the labor market.
    Keywords: Gender wage gap, labor force participation, wage decomposition, glass ceiling, glass door.
    JEL: C31 C49 J21 J24 J31 J71
    Date: 2014–11
  5. By: Ankita Mishra; Jaai Parasnis
    Abstract: Individual fertility preference is influenced by observed social norms. The present paper estimates the effect of the observed fertility of peers on a woman’s fertility preference. We find that both neighbourhood peers and religious peers have a significant impact on individual fertility preferences, but their relative importance changes with family size. An increase in peer fertility increases the probability of preferring more children. While women’s fertility preferences conform to the changes in observed fertility of their peers, education plays an important role in moderating peer effects. Our results contribute to the understanding of peer effects in fertility as well as possible policy responses.
    Keywords: peer effects, multinomial logit, fertility, India, education, wealth status
    JEL: D12 J13
    Date: 2014–09
  6. By: Lutfunnahar Begum; Philip J. Grossman; Asadul Islam
    Abstract: Using experimental techniques, we identify parental attitudes toward different-gendered children in rural Bangladesh. We randomly selected households that had at least two school-age children (6–18 years) of different genders. Parents, either jointly or individually, were given endowments to allocate, freely or restricted, for the benefit of anonymous girls or boys at a nearby school. The results suggest that: 1) there is no systematic inherent bias in parental attitudes toward children of a specific gender; 2) neither parent is systematically biased; 3) there are no significant differences in parents’ behavior; and 4) tests suggest that subjects revealed their true preferences.
    Keywords: Household behavior, Gender bias, Children, Field experiment, Bangladesh
    JEL: D10 J16 J13 C93 D13
    Date: 2014–09
  7. By: Kunze, Astrid (Norwegian School of Economics); Miller, Amalia (University of Virginia)
    Abstract: This paper studies gender spillovers in career advancement using 11 years of employer-employee matched data on the population of white-collar workers at over 4,000 private-sector establishments in Norway. Our data include unusually detailed job information for each worker, which enables us to define seven hierarchical ranks that are consistent across establishments and over time in order to measure promotions (defined as year-to-year rank increases) even for individuals who change employers. We first find that women have significantly lower promotion rates than men across all ranks of the corporate hierarchy, even after controlling for a range of individual characteristics (age, education, tenure, experience) and including fixed effects for current rank, year, industry, and even work establishment. In measuring the effects of female coworkers, we find positive gender spillovers across ranks (flowing from higher-ranking to lower-ranking women) but negative spillovers within ranks. The finding that greater female representation at higher ranks narrows the gender gap in promotion rates at lower ranks suggests that policies that increase female representation in corporate leadership can have spillover benefits to women in lowers ranks.
    Keywords: gender differences in promotions, women in leadership, workplace gender spillovers
    JEL: J6 J7 M5
    Date: 2014–12

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