nep-dem New Economics Papers
on Demographic Economics
Issue of 2015‒08‒01
six papers chosen by
Michele Battisti
ifo Institut

  1. Analyzing the impact of financial sector growth on female empowerment: A focus on the United States of America By Tariq, Anam; Masih, Mansur
  2. Customer discrimination and employment outcomes: Theory and evidence from the French labor market By Pierre-Philippe Combes; Bruno Decreuse; Morgane Laouénan; Alain Trannoy
  3. What is the sense of gender targeting in agricultural extension programs? Evidence from eastern DR Congo. By Lambrecht, Isabel; Vanlauwe, Bernard; Maertens, Miet
  4. The impact of living and working longer on pension income in five European countries: Estonia, Finland, Hungary, the Netherlands and Poland By Elena Jarocinska; Anna Ruzik-Sierdzinska; Theo Nijman; Andres Vork; Niku Määttänen; Robert Gál
  5. Gender-specific Risk Preferences and Fertilizer Use in Kenyan Farming Households By Sheremenko, Ganna; Magnan, Nicholas
  6. When Do Punishment Institutions Work? By Patrick Aquino; Robert S. Gazzale; Sarah Jacobson

  1. By: Tariq, Anam; Masih, Mansur
    Abstract: It is believed that institutional economics takes into account factors that are often neglected in neoclassical economics. Of these is the role of cultural expectations, societal norms and gender-related expectations. To test whether gender does play a significant role in impacting an individual’s well-being is our broad objective. On a more specific level, we want to test the effect of the presence and penetration of the financial industry, measured by deposit accounts and also represented by GDP growth in this paper, on female empowerment, measured by female labour workforce participation. We also use unemployment figures to check if it is affected in a similar fashion to our main dependent variable and if not, why there is a difference of impact between overall employment and that which is specific to the female gender only. We assume that active workforce participation represents an individual’s level of financial independence and consequently, one’s level of empowerment within the society. We use the Auto Regressive Distributive Lag(ARDL) technique to investigate an issue which is often studied based on a cross-country analysis rather than on a time-series scale. We also chose to make the United States of America our focus, as we would like to test if the impact on a developed country is similar to that of developing countries. Amongst our major findings are the lack of impact formal financial institutions seem to have on female participation in an economy, while we notice a significant level of correlation between unemployment, female participation and GDP.
    Keywords: Financial sector, female empowerment, ARDL
    JEL: C22 C58 E44
    Date: 2015–06–20
  2. By: Pierre-Philippe Combes (Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille); Bruno Decreuse (Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille); Morgane Laouénan (Sciences Po LIEPP); Alain Trannoy (Aix-Marseille School of Economics)
    Abstract: The paper investigates the link between the over-exposure of African immigrants to unemployment in France and their under-representation in jobs in contact with customers. We build a two-sector matching model with ethnic sector-specific preferences, economy-wide employer discrimination, and customer discrimination in jobs in contact with customers. The outcomes of the model allow us to build a test of ethnic discrimination in general and customer discrimination in particular. We run the test on French individual data in a cross-section of local labor markets (Employment Areas). Our results show that there is both ethnic and customer discrimination in the French labor market.
    Keywords: Discrimination; Matching Frictions; Jobs in Contact; Ethnic Unemployment; Local Labor Markets
    JEL: J15 J61 R23
    Date: 2014–04
  3. By: Lambrecht, Isabel; Vanlauwe, Bernard; Maertens, Miet
    Abstract: Development projects often evaluate their gender strategy by the proportion of female participants. However, female participation not necessarily coincides with reaching program objectives. With data from South-Kivu, we analyze whether targeting female farmers in agricultural extension programs increases the adoption of three technologies: improved legume varieties, row planting, and mineral fertilizer. We find that joint male and female program participation leads to the highest adoption rates, and that female participation is not conducive for the adoption of capital-intensive technologies while it is for (female) labor-intensive technologies, and that targeting female-headed households is more effective for technology adoption than targeting female farmers in male-headed households.
    Keywords: gender, agricultural technology adoption, agricultural extension, sub-Saharan Africa, eastern DR Congo, integrated soil fertility management, Agricultural and Food Policy, Community/Rural/Urban Development,
    Date: 2014
  4. By: Elena Jarocinska; Anna Ruzik-Sierdzinska; Theo Nijman; Andres Vork; Niku Määttänen; Robert Gál
    Abstract: Life expectancies are rapidly increasing and uncertain in all countries in Europe. To keep pension systems affordable, policy reforms are to be implemented which will encourage individuals to work longer. In this paper we analyze the impact of working and living longer on pension incomes in five European countries and assess the impact of these policy reforms on the financial well-being of the elderly. The paper shows the diversity of the policy measures taken in these countries. Furthermore, we analyze the financial incentives for working longer and postponing claiming pension benefits and we assess the attractiveness of these options. Lastly, we study how increases in life expectancies and survival probabilities affect pension incomes.
    Keywords: pension benefits, life expectancy, retirement age, policy reforms
    JEL: H55 J11 J26
    Date: 2014–05
  5. By: Sheremenko, Ganna; Magnan, Nicholas
    Abstract: The adoption of new technologies, such as fertilizer, plays an important role in improving agricultural production in Africa. Fertilizer is a risky input and its adoption by farmers is often very low. Farmers’ risk attitudes are often considered to be the reason behind low fertilizer adoption. Typical empirical research ignores the family dynamics that affects household’s agricultural choices. This paper uses a collective household model to estimate the effects of experimentally derived risk preferences of both spouses in farming households interacted with relative women’s bargaining power on fertilizer use. We find that empowered females who are more risk and loss averse use less fertilizer, than disempowered females in collective households. More loss averse male household heads opt for using more affordable type of fertilizer to avoid higher losses in the event of a negative shock. More risk averse and loss averse female household heads are also less likely to use riskier types of fertilizer.
    Keywords: Collective household model, Loss aversion, New agricultural technology adoption, Non-linear probability weighting, Risk aversion, Women empowerment., International Development, Risk and Uncertainty, O13, O14, O33, O55,
    Date: 2015
  6. By: Patrick Aquino (Harvard Graduate School of Education); Robert S. Gazzale (University of Toronto); Sarah Jacobson (Williams College)
    Abstract: The public good literature has often found that a punishment option increases cooperation while the gift exchange literature has found the opposite. We use a novel experiment to seek the cause of this difference. We begin with a gift exchange game with punishment as it has typically been implemented therein, and modify two features to replicate conditions more like those usually used in a public good game: punishment's power and its timing (whether the punisher publicly pre-commits to punishment before the punishee decides or acts after the punishee). We replicate the result that punishment institutions as they have typically been implemented in gift exchange games "backfire," but show that this bad outcome disappears if punishment is more powerful. We find three reasons that punishment decreases cooperation: lower wages are offered (a stick is substituted for a carrot); punishment is poorly chosen by many punishers; and some agents spitefully choose low cooperation in retribution against a punishing principal, but only if the punishment is weak so that spite is relatively cheap. We find that punishment that is not publicly pre-committed to is not effective in this game, even though this kind of punishment is similar to that used in many public good games in the literature where punishment does seem to increase cooperation. The only punishment institution that increases cooperation is high-power punishment that is publicly pre-committed to. Finally, the existence of a punishment institution often decreases social surplus (when punishment-related losses are considered), although it may eventually increase social surplus if it is powerful and publicly pre-committed to.
    Keywords: punishment, cooperation, reciprocity, gift exchange, public good
    JEL: C91 D03 D64 H41 J41
    Date: 2015–07

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